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Born in 1911 Bob Chow was the first Asian American gunsmith of any renown. He was American born in California and became proficient in target shooting. In 1948 he was on the US Olympic Team competing in London in the rapid fire event. In the 1950's thru the 80's he was the go to guy for west coast bullseye shooters. This project came in as just an upper. The Colt Commander slide was fit with a S&W K frame rear sight nested nicely in the slide. The front sight is custom made and silver soldered in place. Bob refit the Colt barrel using a lock up tab on the inside of the slide similar to what Swenson did. I don't know who did it first. Maybe Chow. He fit his own bushing to the barrel. For my part I built a lower from a Colt Commander frame. Checked 30 LPI by Pete Single after I fit a Stan Chen Gen 2 mag well. The internals are all bar stock from E2. I made a custom grip safety using our blank. The grips are ebony cut to fit the shortened frame. The original slide was blue so I just reblued it. The lower is hard chrome for a nice two tone finished carry gun. I would have liked to have met Bob I'm sure I could have learned a lot from him.







 

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Looks great. Apparently he did a better job than most at hiding the original rear sight dovetail. Looks like it was never there. Very nice lower half. It looks like they were meant for each other.
 

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I love the gun. The trigger guard, mag well, sights, grip safety/beavertail, everything, are all beautiful. Bob Chow would be proud!
 

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What a beautiful gun, Greg, but too bad the front strap is checkered. It should've been stippled very aggressively with triangular tip punch, just like Uncle Bob used to do :)
 

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Great looking gun and the slide stop serrations are in the correct position :)

Grant
 

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Great combination of turning history into a shooter. I didn't realize that Bob Chow went so far back. Two things: If anyone has a good resource on a bunch of these early 'smiths in one place, I'd like to read it. Second, being old enough to see K-sights gunsmith mounted as about the only way to get carry type adjustables on 1911s, I've always liked them. Used to see them in pictures of Commanders that belonged to people like George Nonte and Mel Tappan, to give a reference. I'm not sure if any of the modern adjustable sights look as good or as compact. Makes me wonder if there would ever be a market again for something like this that could be put on more easily/cheaply than it was in the 70s.
 

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If you are ever in Elko, NV go to the Northeastern Nevada Museum. They have on display Bob Chow's firearm collection. It is pretty impressive. I should have taken some photos when I was there.
 

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This is the way Mr. Chow did a Bo-Mar install on my ‘72 Combat Commander. The rear of the slide is cut away and the firing pin stop visible.
- Joe
BD2310BC-1878-4461-8714-1DF938FB83E4.jpeg
 

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My very first IPSC conversion in 74-75 was done by Bob. He couldn’t have been nicer to a poor kid trying to get serious about that game.
 

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Check on inside of slide for stamped markings like:
B = Barrel
S = Stippling
BS = Bushing
FA = Fully Accurized
along with completion date.
 
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