The titanium frame and slide - Pistolsmith

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Old 11-16-2001, 05:50 AM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Weber City, Virginia
Posts: 705
I would appreciate hearing any comments on the Caspian titanium slide and frame combo.
What type of weight reduction would you see over steel slide and frame? What are the drawbacks? What are the positives?

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Old 11-16-2001, 07:17 AM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 555
This is from Gary Smith at Caspian about their Ti frame.

"We are experiencing excellent results from our titanium frames. We've had titanium frames out in the world for over a year now without any trouble. The surprise is that that galling never turned out to be the problem we anticipated. Many shops like Gunsite in AZ build them raw without any coatings and have had excellent results (see their website for pic).
We use commercially pure titanium from cast blanks provided from Ruger's foundary. The weight comparison between aluminum and steel looks like this:
Aluminum 4.6 oz
Titanium 7.3 oz
Steel 11.9 oz
Titanium frames are available now.
We have HiCap frames available also.
We can make the officer model with a government length dust cover, but no longer than that.
It's tough to polish, but it can be done.
Anodizing is not all that difficult. Any anodizer with an ffl should pull it off. I received some information from anolize ( and the do some wild colors.... or you can just leave the titanium natural and not worry about it.
The feed ramps are a lot tougher than the aluminum, so you should not have that problem. We haven't seen it yet and have had quite a few receivers out there for over a year.I'll post any problems if they appear, but so far these frames seem to be working out just fine."

Not sure about the SV Ti frame and Slide...hope that helps
Old 11-16-2001, 08:30 AM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Gary Smith
Posts: 20
As far as titanium slides go, our tests from over 5 years ago have led us to believe it's not a good idea. I suppose you could make them work in a steel gun or some other kind of whimpy load situation, but we will not risk selling them as a general purpose slide. They just don't have the mass required for safe and reliable operation on a 1911 in our opinion. I am reaaly hot on the titanium frames however and believe you'll be seeing more and more guns being built on them.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Gary Smith on 2001-11-16 09:31 ]</font>
Old 11-16-2001, 12:16 PM   #4
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Chino Hills, CA
Posts: 82
Thanks for the update and welcome aboard!
Old 11-20-2001, 11:39 AM   #5
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Ohio
Posts: 285
Aside from the feed ramp toughness, what other advantages does a titanium frame have over an aluminum frame?
Old 11-23-2001, 02:17 AM   #6
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Issaquah, WA
Posts: 3,831
Feed ramp issues are a BIG deal, the refinish and light weight are the others. I wish the weight were closer to aluminum than steel but I'll take what I can get.

The two biggest headaches to build on aluminum are feed ramp issues and the coatings. Both are mute points with Caspian's Titanium. Heinie has a personal gun in 38 Super in think? I have one in 45. Makes a great carry gun.

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