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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New member here. Excuse me if this question has been posed before, I was unable to find it using the search feature.

I'm in the market for a vintage 1911. In searching I've come across a few 1911's that while otherwise complete, are missing the "United States Property" stamp on the frame. Now I know the reason the stamp is missing, as thousands of the 1911's were 'liberated' from the military upon a service persons return home from war.

What I would like to know is approximately what percent hit in value does a 1911 take when the "United States Property" stamp has been removed? I ask because I've seen one or two 1911's in good shape, that I really liked, but was unsure about making an offer because of the missing stamp. I didn't want to overpay, which is possible because of my lack of knowledge. As you can probably tell, the missing stamp is not a 'make or break' to me but I just don't want to pay 'stamped' prices for an 'un-stamped' gun.

TIA, Tony
 

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Generally, once the USP has been filed off the pistol ceases to be a collectible. However with the market being what it is I've seen people paying crazy prices for otherwise clean pistols regardless.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
dsk, thanks for the quick reply. I don't think I communicated myself very well. I wasn't thinking about collectability. Here's an example; lets say I'm interested in a decent 1911 shooter but it's missing the 'Property' stamp. All things being equal, if this gun would normally be worth $1500 with no markings missing, how much would it be worth now? I'm just looking for an approximation, I know that now one can extimate with precision. I just don't want to overpay for what it is really worth in the general (not collectable) market.

Thank again, Tony
 

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$500, $600-$700 if it is one that has parts that have high demand and they are in excellent condition.

Personally, $500 would be TOPS for me and I'd really be wanting some parts I needed.
 

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If you drew the line at, say, $700 and someone else bought the gun for $750, would you regret not having spent the additional $50, or laugh at the guy who'd overpaid?
I remember bidding over $3000 on a gun on gunbroker, and waking the next day to find that someone else had "bought" the gun for $25. That is, $25 more than my maximum bid. Was I thinking, "Ha, what a sucker!", or, "Wow, I could have had that gun for $50"?
 

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USGI pistols with original slides are not considered shooters because the slides are not hardened (M1911) and only spot-hardened (M1911A1). A rebuild with a post-war Colt slide or a later revised slide could be a good shooter because those slides are fully hardened. You have to learn to recognize the good slides. If you want one just to look at and maybe shoot once or twice a year, a USGI pistol without the USP mark should not cost more than $650 if that much. However, for that much you can find a brand new pistol with a warranty to shoot all you want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks guys, really appreciate the information. I'll keep looking, I'm sure there is a nice one out there with my name on it.

Tony
 

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Tony,
If by chance you want a shooter that simply has the look of a USGI issue .45, you can also look at modern clones like the Kahr/Auto Ordnance or Springfield Armory GI MilSpec pistols. There have been several discussions on here recently about these guns, and they can be found either new or used in the sub-$500 range...

MO
 

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Another option Tony, are the commercial "Government Model" pistols. They lack the USP marking because they were never US Property. They sell for considerably less than the USGI pistols and there are many available that have not been monkeyed with.
 

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One consideration is always the sum of the parts. If you have a 90% M1911 with original parts but no US Property, say a gun in the 25000 serial range, like altered snipers it is worth the sum of its parts. You have a 300+ mag, a $500 barrel, a $300 slide, $200-300 grips, etc.. Hey the parts are often worth more than the whole. In other words your question has no simple answer. Post pictures of all the important stuff and you may get a meaningful answer.
 

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A sistema is the answer for a 1911 pistol that makes a good shooter. I bought one made in 1952 original blue finish and looks and shoots so nice for $500.00
Grips are not correct but one side was damaged so I put the wood ones on.
 

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Depending on where you live, $1,000 might be a pretty reasonable price for a USGI pistol, even one missing the USP. I use $1,000 as my target price (anything under that is just a bonus). Unless I'm just really bad at finding hidden one, Southern Nevada has an incredibly sparse market, so I have to use GB or pay a lot more than market value for gun show "finds". So try not to keep a $700 max in your head, pay what you're willing to pay. Like someone else mentioned, if you're going to regret not buying something, just go ahead and buy it. If it makes you happy and is what you want then it's money well spent.
 
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