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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ladies and Gents,
Anyone know how I can tell if my newest custom shop colt's hammer is MIM or tool steel? It appears to be stainless, but for all I know, could be steel with a grey coating. It is a lightened job, similar to what Kimber uses. Surface looks to have been filed on the sides, not polished looking, but smooth enough. Works good so far, I am just the curious type. Has the letter "S" stamped in the rear of the upright. Thanks in advance for replying to my ignorance....arman
 

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If it's MIM, there should be some sort of mold or gate mark on it usually on the striker face. The S anotates stainless steel, and is usually found on investment castings to keep from getting mixed up with steel parts. Sounds like you have a cast stainless steel hammer. Probably was machined, or precision ground for the width dimensions.
PS: Even if it was MIM, it is possible to MIM stainless steel these days.


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Really interesting....Don't ya think??
 

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Not worth worrying about really...MIM is no more likely to fail than any other part.

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A man with a watch knows what time it is; a man with two watches isn't so sure
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Guys. I don't have enough knowledge to know if I should worry about an mim part, I just happen to equate MIM manufacturing with pot-metal. When I spend >$1,000 I would like to have the tool steel material in the gun to makes me feel "good", but then I am a little weird in my thinking. Noticing all of the Chip McCormick cheapies floating around made me wonder if Colt had succumbed to them as well as Kimber. If I want cheap parts and cheap manufacturing, I will buy a Norinco. Since I don't, I buy only higher-end Colts. They have always worked for me, and I really hate to see anyone cheapen their product to stay competitive. I seem to be paying more for Colt than for a comparable or better-optioned Kimber, and therefore expect better-quality (read tool-steel) parts. I am probably un-realistic in my expectations :)
 

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Yes, you are. The comparable Colt actually has a couple less features than the Kimber for about $75-100 more. It's still a good gun, but if you think the McCormick parts are "cheapies" while the ones on the Colt are somehow better, you're foolin yourself.
The fact is, MIM parts work fine if kept to places that don't have to handle a lot of stress. I have yet to actually meet anyone or talk to any dealer that has had an MIM part break. I know sometimes they do, but it is pretty rare IMHO.

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A man with a watch knows what time it is; a man with two watches isn't so sure
 

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Then don't buy new, off-the shelf,pistols. They are everywhere, almost. It's really notb that big a deal. If it DOES bother you that much, you'll need to go custom or semi-custom to buy the rights to choose. Otherwise, there's no telling at what point a manufacturer MAY decide to start adding parts of the MIM nature. Many pistols can be purchased as you like through the Custom Shops of the different makers. You may also decide you'd like to have someone build a pistol to your specs from a one-man shop. Up to you...
The days of tool steel parts are going away...There are not many left...They aren't Colt, Springfield and Kimber any more. They all use some MIM parts...They WILL alter that for you. You'll just have to pay for it...


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I HEARD that MIM parts are more likely to fail (crack) and also that they wear faster, so all that fine tuning that you have or had done does not last.

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