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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
LGS has two new pistols that I like. I will pick one tomorrow. Both are Commander size and bobtailed. One is bare SS slide and frame with "Special Forces II" on the slide.

The other is Gen III black slide and frame and says "Special Forces” (sans the II) on the slide.

Both are gorgeous, but I’m a black gun type of guy so I’m leaning towards the GenIII coated gun.

Is the GenIII gun coated over SS or coated over carbon steel? The GenIII gun does feel a little lighter than the bare stainless “II” gun.
 

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The only difference between the two versions of the Special forces is the front strap and mainspring housing grip 'treatment'

The SF has the original chain link which looks like long scallops cut out.

The newer SFII has the chain link II (more commonly known as golf balling), looks just like what it sounds like, the surface of a golf ball.

Other than this the price and features on a 'stock' gun are the same.

Of course either gun can be had in SS / SS with Gen 3 / carbon steel blued / carbon steel Gen 3 / stealth gray G3 and last but not least SS frame with carbon steel blued or Gen 3 slide!

Almost forgot two tone Gen 3 as well!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Hammond......thanks. I was researching this while you were answering.

It looks like I will either need to take along a magnet or ask to take off the slide to look for the “S” to see if carbon steel or not. Just want to make an informed decision and almost think I would prefer the CS to the SS but either is good per my reading here. I am not a big fan of things “II” so this pushes me further towards the GenIII gun.

Whew......that was easy. Decision made.
 

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Nothing wrong with either, but just from a numbers game, Brown seems to make more Carry models in SS with or without Gen 3 than carbon, so from and odds perspective it is most likely SS.

As you are aware, all SS guns have a S inside the slide and frame if each part is SS.
 

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If I am not mistaken, a magnet will stick to both carbon and stainless guns?
You are correct. 400 Series stainless (which guns are made of) has a much higher iron content than 300 Series and is magnetic. This allows the 400 Series to be hardened which isn't possible with 300 series stainless.

The easiest way to tell is find a small spot on the inside of the gun and try some cold blue. If it is carbon steel, it will change the color dark. Cold blue won't react with stainless steel so there will be no color change.
 

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You are correct. 400 Series stainless (which guns are made of) has a much higher iron content than 300 Series and is magnetic. This allows the 400 Series to be hardened which isn't possible with 300 series stainless.

The easiest way to tell is find a small spot on the inside of the gun and try some cold blue. If it is carbon steel, it will change the color dark. Cold blue won't react with stainless steel so there will be no color change.
Good idea, however, the LGS will most likely have a fit if a customer wants to take the gun apart and try some cold blue on it. IF these guns are NEW then the LGS should have paperwork with them? IF the LGS stalls on the questions,, Might be a good idea to wait until Monday and call Brown from the shop and supply them with the ser# - Brown should be able to answer any questions on the gun in question
 

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Good idea, however, the LGS will most likely have a fit if a customer wants to take the gun apart and try some cold blue on it. IF these guns are NEW then the LGS should have paperwork with them? IF the LGS stalls on the questions,, Might be a good idea to wait until Monday and call Brown from the shop and supply them with the ser# - Brown should be able to answer any questions on the gun in question
Yep, it would be pretty hard to check it on the sly at the store! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
.........a few twists today, but none bad.


While the salesman assured me the gun was carbon steel with G3 coating, after I got it home and field stripped it, there was clearly an “S” stamped on both the upper and lower so it is confirmed to be SS under the G3. I am fine with that.

After looking at Jim’s post above, the back and front strap stippling on my new SF G3 is the “golf ball” as shown on the SFII. So it appears I have the SFII feature with an “SF” slide. I am fine with that too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Unfortunately it will be a couple of days before I have time to shoot it. In the meantime I purchased some 8 round Kimpro Tac Mags and have been hand cycling rounds with those as well as with the 7 rd mag that comes with the pistol.

Hand cycling live rounds has been consistent from mag to mag. 230 gr hardball cycles very smoothly except the nose of last round out of the mag (all 3 mags) gets hung on the fwd part of the ejection port. Don’t think that will be an issue with just a shell casing being ejected sans the bullet. But have never had this issue before with any other 1911.

What say you guys? Do your Browns behave this way hand cycling live rounds?
 

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If you are correct then the salesman did not know what he was talking about, however, SFII with no II on the slide?? just for grins, call Brown on Monday and give them the Ser# and tell them the golf ball and SF on the slide and see what Justin has to say, would be interesting
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
If I am not mistaken, a magnet will stick to both carbon and stainless guns?
.......and you would be 100 percent correct. The magnet stuck readily to the pistol.


Some pics from today........





 

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WTH is with that round in the picture?

To answer you question, I find it NOT a good idea to be cycling LIVE rounds - except maybe at the range with muzzle down range - a live rounds - ya just never know what may or may not happen..
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
WTH is with that round in the picture?

To answer you question, I find it NOT a good idea to be cycling LIVE rounds - except maybe at the range with muzzle down range - a live rounds - ya just never know what may or may not happen..
Got to be able to "tap and rack" a malfunction out of there which includes live rounds.

.........never liked that lamp anyway. lol

I’m going to shoot it tomorrow to see if it will extract an empty casing on the last round which is where the issue occurs. Then I’ll try the malfunction drill again to see if it repeats. It only happens on the last round so that tells me there is an interaction between the extractor, casing and follower. The barrel shroud has an extremely sharp edge that comes to a point and snags the point of the round. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow.
 

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If you are correct then the salesman did not know what he was talking about, however, SFII with no II on the slide?? just for grins, call Brown on Monday and give them the Ser# and tell them the golf ball and SF on the slide and see what Justin has to say, would be interesting
I've seen some SFII's on Gunbroker with the golf ball that were marked as Special Forces.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Got to shoot today. 200+ rounds without a hiccup.

I added a plus sign to the round count as at this particular range there was a competition shooter I know who had never shot a Brown. He had a box of .45 and I noticed a slight drool so I said feel free to give it whirl. At 25 feet out of a 8 rd mag there would be 3 holes on the bullseye. He ran the target out to max range which was 75ft and used a bench rest. Target came back with one big hole in the center. He was impressed and so was I. He said it was as accurate as his 5” comp pistol.

As far as the hang up of the last round on the tap and rack drill, I’m going de-burr the point on the barrell shroud that is grabbing the point of the round.

She’s a keeper for sure.
 

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The only difference between the two versions of the Special forces is the front strap and mainspring housing grip 'treatment'

The SF has the original chain link which looks like long scallops cut out.

The newer SFII has the chain link II (more commonly known as golf balling), looks just like what it sounds like, the surface of a golf ball.

Other than this the price and features on a 'stock' gun are the same.

Of course either gun can be had in SS / SS with Gen 3 / carbon steel blued / carbon steel Gen 3 / stealth gray G3 and last but not least SS frame with carbon steel blued or Gen 3 slide!

Almost forgot two tone Gen 3 as well!
Don't wanna hijack the thread, but what is the effective difference between Gen III over SS vs. Gen III over Carbon? Is the Carbon gun going to be heavier? Is SS more rust-resistant? Does corrosion resistance even matter when it's covered in Gen III?

Both of my Browns are SS. One is Gen III. Haven't seen a Carbon Brown before in the flesh.
 

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Basically while carbon steel is harder, SS is much more corrosion resistant, so both have advantages. The extra corrosion resistance of a SS framed gun coated in Gen III would not come into play till the Gen III was removed in spots for wear and tear.

While I believe carbon steel is in fact heavier, differences would never be noticed in real world use.

As far as wear resistance, most people will never shoot their 1911 anywhere near enough to see the point a carbon steel gun would outlast a ss framed one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Don't wanna hijack the thread, but what is the effective difference between Gen III over SS vs. Gen III over Carbon? Is the Carbon gun going to be heavier? Is SS more rust-resistant? Does corrosion resistance even matter when it's covered in Gen III?

Both of my Browns are SS. One is Gen III. Haven't seen a Carbon Brown before in the flesh.
I have read that G3 and other firearms coatings adhere slightly better to carbon steel than SS.

FWIW one cubic ft of CS is 490 lbs. One cubic ft of SS is 500 lbs.

Carbon steel is definitely stronger than SS but SS has metal memory meaning it will retake its shape more readily after flexing.

I like both CS and SS. But when the pistol starts to show wear, a coated CS pistol is more attractive than a coated SS pistol IMO.
 
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