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Idiot Mark? Solution?

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by tlakidd, Nov 13, 2011.

  1. tlakidd

    tlakidd Eugene Member

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    Why do so many expensive 1911 guns have the famous idiot mark? Is there not a solution? I find it interesting when I read the classifieds on a 1911 it seems like 90% come with the famous engraved idiot mark? Why? You notice the tag lines "slight idiot mark" or "selling for a friend" or "previous owner"..


    How do you prevent the idiot mark on your 1911?

    My solution that I have found is simple, cheap, and probably already in your garage. I take a small piece about 2 inches long of electrical tape. I place it directly under the slide stop. I break the gun down and clean it. I then take a second piece and put it on top of the first piece And slightly cover the hole. Then I take my time, make sure I have plenty if light, and then take my time to gently and carefully reassemble.

    Why electrical tape? Thinkness and no residue left over.. I rarely if ever even touch the tape but if I do the tape prevents the slide stop from sliding on the frame and marking the gun.

    Again I would like to know other tricks that you have come up with to preserve the looks and value of your 1911.

    Thanks
    Tim
     
  2. DinhRose

    DinhRose Austin, Texas (Ex-Pat of SE PDX) Active Member

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    I don't think you can really remove the idiot mark and I've tried. However to prevent them I just stick a business card in the area and slowly worked the slide stop back. Or do what most people do and never take the gun down :)
     
  3. PlayboyPenguin

    PlayboyPenguin Pacific Northwest Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

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    I use the same method to prevent idiot marks. They can be removed though. I have removed several from older guns. If the gun is stainless it is easy to do. Just a few minutes work and you are done. if the gun is blued it is easy to do, but you have to have it refinished.

    Before
    CO2.jpg

    After
    CO4.jpg
     
  4. DinhRose

    DinhRose Austin, Texas (Ex-Pat of SE PDX) Active Member

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    That's right my friend was able to somewhat polish his ss colt but no such luck with parkerized Springfield. I was always curious why the slide release couldn't be slightly updated to prevent this. I know it's called an idiot mark for a reason. Lol
     
  5. ricsha

    ricsha Oregon Coast - Lincoln City Member

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    Idiot marks don't need to happen, but often do. There is a simple, and permanent, solution: Go to the 1911 Forum and search for "Log Man slide stop modification".
    Log shows you how to use a needle file to put a small groove into the slide stop, which when properly placed saddles over the plunger, allowing you to line it up and push it straight in without any slips that cause the dreaded idiot marks. I've tried it, and it works, without effecting the functions of the slide stop.
     
  6. The Quiet Man

    The Quiet Man rural Washington County, Oregon Active Member

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  7. Nwcid

    Nwcid Yakima and N of Spokane Well-Known Member

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    Hhhhmmm I own several factory 1911's and have never made an idiot mark on them. Not using any tricks or tape or cards, ect. Never found it that hard to put the slide stop back in...........
     
    rufus, 74sporty, ricsha and 3 others like this.
  8. saread

    saread Bothell, WA Member

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    I don't have them on my guns either. Of note, on my Swenson, the slide stop notch trick was already there. Apparently, Armand Swenson figured that one out a long time ago. In any case, even if I managed to scratch one, I wouldn't care. It doesn't affect the function and if a mark on my gun gives you a problem, well, it's still my gun and I still don't care.
     
  9. ricsha

    ricsha Oregon Coast - Lincoln City Member

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    Like Nwcid, I have, or have had, a dozen or more 1911's, none of which have an Idiot Mark, with the single exception of one that came with it from a previous owner. Once you know how to properly install the slide stop it's easy enough to avoid. Still, lots of people do it. I see lots of 1911's for sale, advertised as "like new" except for a small Idiot Mark... To me there is no such thing as a "small" Idiot Mark.

    To Bellehood and CleverName: Certainly, there are other designs that are easier to disassemble.
    If you are not a 1911 aficionado I probably can't explain to you the allure of a great design that has remained unchanged for 100 years, but to those of us who love the 1911 platform, even a small Idiot Mark is like a dent in the side of your brand-new car, or a wart of the face of a beautiful woman; it's just not right!

    I have, and carry, a Glock and a Kahr, and a couple of Sigs, even a couple of Smith & Wesson wheel guns, but for pure joy of ownership nothing beats a well-made 1911. But that's just me; your experience may vary.
    Regards,
     
    swoop and (deleted member) like this.
  10. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

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    Most of these marks I see are from those who do not fully understand how the slide stop should be inserted...or just too much of a hurry.

    If the makers would produce the slide stop to install easier, such as Log Man points out, there wouldn't be a problem. I tend to modify all my stops this way, but some of the quality aftermarket stops already have the modification done...such as the Wilson Bulletproof model.

    xtacslidestop.jpg
     
  11. doubletap007

    doubletap007 Beaverton Active Member

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    i bought a springer 1911 used with an idiot scratch and later wanted to sell it,i couldn't believe how anal people are about this little scratch.they treat it like a disease over a stupid little scratch!
    i realized that this little scratch allows me to carry and shoot my very accurate and reliable weapon without worrying about anymore scratches and that you can pick up 1911's fairly cheap due to the idiot mark.
    this mil spec 1911($600) is just as accurate as a kimber ($1400 model) and i can use it for what it was made for....it's a workhorse
    that was made for war conditions so why have a gun you're afraid to carry lest you get a little scratch?
    the idiot mark is the best thing that can happen to your 1911 in my opinion,now i can relax and enjoy my gun.
    i would love to buy your kimber 1911's with idiot marks really cheap and i may kick it across the street a few times too so i can enjoy the gun without worrying about a stupid scratch:)
     
  12. swoop

    swoop Milwaukie, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    You must be a kid or you'd have more respect for the 1911 platform than to talk about kicking one across the street. A handgun can be carried daily, shot a bunch, and still look good.
     
  13. doubletap007

    doubletap007 Beaverton Active Member

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    no,im an old f@rt....and i do respect the 1911,thats my point!...it dont have to be pretty to be a good gun.i think people who turn away from a 1911 with an idiot scratch are infact kinda childish since it dont hurt the gun a bit.
     
  14. swoop

    swoop Milwaukie, Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I get where you're comming from on that. Some folks like to buy a pretty gun to shine and look at. 1911's were made to be shot.
     
  15. 74sporty

    74sporty metro portland Active Member

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    the 1911 is a handsomely machined piece. i'd keep marks off of one if i could help it. even on an old vintage pistol.

    and the fact is that a 1911 can be reassembled without swinging the takedown pin upward against the frame causing a scratch.
     
  16. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Wish I'd found this forum a year ago. I feel like such an idiot.

    Mike
     
  17. rufus

    rufus State of Jefferson Well-Known Member

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    True idiot marks are made by idiots prying with screwdrivers. There is no cure.
     
  18. 74sporty

    74sporty metro portland Active Member

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    i learned how not to make the idiot mark by making one on my very first 1911, a 4'' gi model. some men learn by working and making mistakes. some men learn from reading what others have to say on the internet. which one are you? dont be too tough on yourself, because there will be forum members on here who will.
     
  19. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Which on am I? both! LOL. On my first first 1911, a Kimber Stainless II. It's not terrible, the gun shown above looks like it's been used to pound nails! I've learned how to push just right to insert the slide release without further damage. Now what I need to know is how PP removes the mark(s).

    Mike
     
  20. DinhRose

    DinhRose Austin, Texas (Ex-Pat of SE PDX) Active Member

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    I am lucky because i have a friend who's a dentist. One day he took his dental equipment and started to polish the frame. Surprisingly he was able to remove the idiot mark. It's not hard if you have a SS finish. The parkerize stuff on the other hand is not easy.