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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys I was wondering if Wilson's wrap around front strap checkering is good, I have been thinking about getting the front strap checkered for some time but i don't have the $200 to send it in. also the part is only $10..

any thoughts?
 

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The Wilson cheese grater?:biglaugh:

Grip tape will do the same job for fifty cents.

I have a pistol with a $200 checkering job. I won't have another. It's just not worth it unless you are a purist.
 

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I've seen some pretty dismal applications of the Wilson unit, plus it looks cheap. Go to a skateboard shop, they'll give you enough scraps to last your lifetime.
 

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A Kimber I bought came with one, and while I have never liked front strap checkering (have had a lot of whiskey-fueled discussions over the merits of this mod) I have somewhat grown to like the Wilson strap, though if the finish does not match, it looks pretty cheesy. I picked up another Kimber to match it, and am thinking about adding the Wilson thingy to make them even since it is pretty cheap. I guess I would prefer it over a clean frontstrap on some guns (some 1911's have the frontstrap machined a little differently, I notice I prefer some grips over others)

On my "nice" pistols, I prefer to use the Pachy wrap around grips, though I guess that makes me old school.
 

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I'll have to disagree about the strap tape working as well as a Smith's work. A quality custom checkering, stippling, or my favorite Golfballing, will always stand above tape. But I will stand by my previous post that skateboard tape will give you a great grip for pennies. It's just not something I want on a pistol I have pride in!
 

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again, personal, but I KEPT AN OPEN MIND

I have frontstraps that are smooth, serrated, stippled, 20LPI, and skateboard taped.

On my last two 1911 acquistitions they came smooth (Springfield Armory guns, both).
Too smooth, for me. But I didn't have the funds, even at the SA Custom Shop, to add my-fav 20LPI.

So I went to the skateboard park.....

......and bought a $5 sheet of medium-grit skateboard tape.
Big sheet, enough to do 788 guns.

Stuck some on my SA 9x19 1911 and WOW!
Not bad......

So when I added another smooth-front SA 1911 (in 40 S&W) I just cut me another piece of that skateboard tape and WOW!

I still like 20LPI better, but now I know why DR puts tape on his extreme-service 1911s.....

Really glad I keep an open mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks, thats all I needed to know. the skateboard tape sounds like a good idea. the finish on the front strap of my pistol has worn off somehow.. geuss they did a bad parkerizing job, either that or i am too rough on it.

as for the grip tape, how should I apply it to the front strap? just some super glue or something?
 

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The checkered front strap on my Baer will draw blood!
Skate tape works well for an expensive fix. I use it on my USPSA Single Stack gun.

The installation process for me was to remove the stocks and rough fit a piece of the skate tape so it will be under the stocks when complete. Clean the frame with something like 'goof-off' that will remove all oil and grease and let dry.

Even though the tape has an adhesive backing, I painted the tape and the frame with contact cement. Then, with the frame in a padded vise, apply the tape and try to stretch it tightly around the front strap. Keep working it to get it as tight as possible to remove any wrinkles. Trim the excess with an exacto knife(razor) and reinstall the stocks.
Good luck.
 

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I'll have to disagree about the strap tape working as well as a Smith's work. A quality custom checkering, stippling, or my favorite Golfballing, will always stand above tape. But I will stand by my previous post that skateboard tape will give you a great grip for pennies. It's just not something I want on a pistol I have pride in!
I have a custom 1911 by Charlie Kelsey with 20 LPI checkering on the front strap, and I love it. The skate board tape on my Para P-16s works just as well.
 

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I have the Wilson checkering strap. I decided I like the skateboard grip tape better than checkering. It is ok to see if you prefer checkering or something else. I wouldn't want it on a gun for every day use or carry.
 

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My grip tape has been on the front strap of my pistol for about a year. I just degreased and stuck it on using it's own adhesive. I've never seen a skateboard lossing it's tape from coming unstuck, and they get pretty abused. Also the tape has lost some of it's grip, so it's time to change it out. We'll see how well the tapes adhesive releases.

-Hershey
 

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My grip tape has been on the front strap of my pistol for about a year. I just degreased and stuck it on using it's own adhesive. I've never seen a skateboard lossing it's tape from coming unstuck, and they get pretty abused. Also the tape has lost some of it's grip, so it's time to change it out. We'll see how well the tapes adhesive releases.

-Hershey
I have been using the stuff for years and never had a problem removing it. The adhesive doesn't have too tough a job as long as you clamp the tape in place with the grip panels.
 

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Hey guys I was wondering if Wilson's wrap around front strap checkering is good, I have been thinking about getting the front strap checkered for some time but i don't have the $200 to send it in. also the part is only $10..

any thoughts?
I installed it on my Colt Combat Elite. Here is a pic...

 

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I installed it on my Colt Combat Elite. Here is a pic...

That looks great...I've just installed one on my Gold Cup Trophy. Works well and doesn't look too bad either. Obviously not a perfect match, but then who's looking if you're using the gun for it's intended purpose...Shooting...Will post picture soon.
 

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The installation process for me was to remove the stocks and rough fit a piece of the skate tape so it will be under the stocks when complete. Then, with the frame in a padded vise, apply the tape and try to stretch it tightly around the front strap. Keep working it to get it as tight as possible to remove any wrinkles. Trim the excess with an exacto knife(razor) and reinstall the stocks.
Good luck.
I two questions about this: Do they make the tape in a color that looks ok on a stainless pistol? I was a bit of a skater back in the late 80's, and don't remember ever seeing it in any color but black. (dating myself here). Does everyone tuck it under the grips?
 

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The tape I have is a dark grey. Here it is on the Colt.

 

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I two questions about this: Do they make the tape in a color that looks ok on a stainless pistol? I was a bit of a skater back in the late 80's, and don't remember ever seeing it in any color but black. (dating myself here). Does everyone tuck it under the grips?
To the best of my knowledge skateboard tape only comes in ugly black; this is not a cosmetic upgrade! I tuck my front strap tape under the grip panels to insure that it won't move. I can't imagine any other way to install this tape.
 

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I cut my skateboard tape to cover the whole area under the grips...then cut them out to match the cutouts in the sides of the frame...I used a hole punch and made holes to fit over the grip screw bushings....the tape CAN'T come loose! Also, I use the hole punch to punch out a bunch of holes which I stick on the frontstrap of my double stack 9mm....looks kind of neat when arranged in a pattern. They do fall off occasionally, though.
 
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