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Old 04-14-2020, 11:15 AM
mikerjf mikerjf is offline
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Yes, not a plastic gun thread. A 60-7. Stippled.

This piece had some decent mods - a cleanly-done red front sight insert, nicely bobbed hammer, and a doubleplusgood round-and-polish on the trigger. They also put light springs in, which will go back to stock.

But the metalwork... Oh the humanity! Not a horrible job, but not what I want either. All is not lost - this was intended to be a project gun with metal removed from the start.

So, I'm looking for comments on removing stipple from anyone who's been there. Just file it off? Can something like a flat-faced punch undo it to any useful extent before filing? I want to limit the amount of material I have to remove, especially on the trigger guard.

Also note the grooving on the bottom of the trigger guard, same thing there. Fitz candidate? Thanks for any ideas!


Edit: For anyone considering this, I will say that it is a very sticky surface and would do a great job at stabilizing the gun in your hand... however, there's no way I can use the forward-most stippling without getting my fingers up by the cylinder gap. The grooving on the bottom of the trigger guard, OTOH, is perfectly placed for me and does a reasonable job at being sticky (as well as being a lot better looking!)

I'm thinking this was someone's pet carry project of yesteryear.
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Old 04-14-2020, 11:21 AM
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Whoo!

That's gonna go pretty deep.
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Old 04-14-2020, 11:59 AM
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Flitz candidate? Doubt any of us will live that long...
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Old 04-14-2020, 12:54 PM
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Got a buddy with a Tig welder?

That will be a lot of material to remove. I don't think that a flat punch will help too much....
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:08 PM
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How is that even done? Looks like traction tape was added.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:15 PM
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Show me that I'm wrong, I say it's not ever coming out.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:23 PM
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As noted, the work is pretty good. In this case, that quality workmanship is not helpful to your goal, particularly how deep and pronounced. Not Flitz and a Dremel.

My dear mother says “a lid for every pot”. Maybe this gun/project needs to wait for a different match.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ken158 View Post
Flitz candidate? Doubt any of us will live that long...
Fitz, not Flitz.
Fitz is a style of carry gun trigger guard modification - basically removing the front half of the trigger guard.
If you were joking, you forgot the smiley
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:27 PM
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If that were mine I would not use a file on it;you may end up with the metal being too thin! What I would do is take a metal working hammer with a ball face and slowly move what metal you have into a little more pleasing appearance.In other words flatten out the high points and make the surface a little more even yet usable.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:39 PM
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If you are determined to fix it, you probably can but youíre going to have to do it carefully. Iíd sure try to extrude as much of that metal back where it came from before filing to the original contours. Once that is done likely some micro-welding and more filing. Then maybe some more welding and filing... What a mess.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:47 PM
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Thank you BC38 for knowing I meant "Fitz". LOL... no, not a Flitz candidate, not in 100 years!

I just happen to have a genius welder friend who can do amazing things with almost any metal type, should have thought of him to begin with - good call!

Thanks for all comments!
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:53 PM
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There is no hope! Grind it down smooth and Ceracoat it or similar.
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Old 04-14-2020, 02:20 PM
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This is really long,,sorry,,ended up being a How-To.

It looks bad but it can all be made to go away.
Since stippling doesn't remove any metal, it just displaces it and moves it around,,I'd first punch it back down with a small dia flat faced punch.
Actually a nail set polished flat to remove the normally seen small concave center in the nail set works very well.
After polishing it flat, put a very gentle radius to the edge/all the way around so your hammer marks don't leave raised edges too if they are not exactly square to the surface.

A nail set is a punch and is hardened. You;ll have to grind it or stone it smooth. If it you can cut it with a file,,it's too soft and will just peen over on you. Lots of cheap import stuff around like that.

Before you even start,,clean the surface of the stippled area well. Acetone or something like it and a brush. Get any and all dirt out of the crevices. Peening down the high spots can trap dirt into low spots and it'll show when you are done.
Cleaning the old dirt and crud out is the first things done when 'removing' lettering and before punching it back down to the surface. Also, lettering is usually scratched clean with a scribe. But stippling is nearly impossible to get at all the voids and clear them.


Support the frame solidly in a vise and pad as needed. Hardwood or lead jaws are the best. Cloth or leather is pretty good but will absorb the hammer blows and not get you the most out of your hammer work.

Go over the entire area rapidly beating down the stippling. Around and around from the center towards the outside in a circular pattern at first.
Then begin the draw & push the metal by peening it from remaining high spots to fill in low areas.
Don't fold over the metal upon itself. That'll just show and unfold later as it's polished and finished. You want to move the entire small mass of metal from one place to another.

When you are satisfied that you have done all the work possible with that size punch,,go to a punch of the same shape, but large face size.
This one will now flatten the small peaks left by your first punch.
Flattening those peaks will push the metal into the surface and smooth and fill it in even more. It has to go somewhere,,it'll go into a void or will push the surface upwards.
Those upward pushed areas can then be pushed back down again with an even larger flat faced punch or at this point you can start using a smooth flat faced hammer exclusively for more area coverage and more power.

At any time through this process you think that any of the small dark areas you see may be dirt trapped in a low area, stop and clear them.
I usually use a metal scriber (very fine hard metal point I use to layout engraving and lettering, ect) and scratch the area down to clean metal then I'm sure there's no dirt or other oxidation that will show up in the finished surface.

Rounded, concave surfaces need extra attention so you don't punch them down too deeply. It's easy to get carried away down in the bottom of the curve of the surface and not easy to get it back.
It may require you to use a punch with a slightly rounded face instead of the flat face depending on how severe the curve is.
Convex/outside curves you can use the flat faced punches.

Through all of this remember that you are tapping, punching, pounding on the metal.
You should not be doing any of that to the extent that it would deform the part(s) in any way. This is not hand forging in a blacksmith shop.
It is actually quite delicate work and imparts no more risk and shock to the parts than engraving a relief pattern would in it's place.
On this project, I'd leave the crane in the gun while working on the stippled section in front of the trigger guard. That'll support that area and is commonly done when doing heavy engraving there.

When you are satisfied that you have moved all the metal you can back to where you can by the methods you have control over,, you will still be able to see the stippled area on the gun.
But from here on, the finishing work with files and the actual removal of any metal will be much less than if you had started right in with files.
Remember that at this point you haven't removed any metal from the gun part.

Now start taking down the surfaces with medium to fine cut files. There will be some stubborn areas that will show deeper punch marks from your work than other areas that clean right up.
Go back in with the punches and move some of the excess metal around to the low areas before you swipe it away with the files.
Use it to your advantage.

I avoid using coarse cut files in the clean up. Though they can get you to a cleaned up surface quicker, they leave deeper scars even deeper yet. Those file marks require more filing and then polishing to finish up. It's just a lot more metal being removed than is necessary and might upset the final contour in some places.

Finish up with abrasive papers and then a scotch-brite (maroon is good for stainless)

It looks like those marks on the trigger guard are light enough that they can be filed off and the guard contoured, polished and you'd never know they'd been there.

For the really stubborn single pit, inclusion, drilled hole, ect. there is the inlay of a piece of steel into the steel of the frame (or bbl, ect).
The 'patch' must match of course, but it's inlayed much the same as a gold inlay is done with a couple of differences. Then polished off.
If done right it can be invisible.
On carbon steel, with the right steel it won't show when blued (or in the white).

Sorry for the long post.
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:12 PM
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Thank you 2152hq, that was chock full of great tips and encourages me. I really appreciate you taking the time to type it all in.

I'll have my welder friend as backup; hopefully I can work it to the point that there may be only small areas to fill.
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:24 PM
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In spite of all the good advice on how to "fix" it, I'm going to be contrarian here and say it was done and it was done well, if you don't like the way it looks, swap it off to somebody who likes it, even if you take a small loss, and get what you want. It's not bad, it's just not what you want; and I'm not sure you'll ever reverse all of it, and I personally wouldn't try. It will never be "like it was before" and since it is a common and readily available model, why go through the hassle?

JMHO - YMMV.
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:13 PM
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Looks like the work of a Glock fan. Not sure why you bought it. Nevertheless, you can always:

Leave it as is - youíre likely the only cool kid on the block with a stippled Smith.

Sell it to a Glock fanboy or someone with eclectic tastes

Thereís always duct tape
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
Fitz, not Flitz.
Fitz is a style of carry gun trigger guard modification - basically removing the front half of the trigger guard.
If you were joking, you forgot the smiley
Wasnít joking, thought you were but spelled it wrong!
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Old 04-14-2020, 07:19 PM
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Die grinder with sanding disc, then red scotchbrite pad, then green pad. Then sandpaper.
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Old 04-14-2020, 07:23 PM
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Oh wow!! I’m at a loss except that’s a lot of cleanup. Dremel maybe. Just wow.
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Old 09-19-2020, 09:54 AM
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Making my own zombie-thread for the followup.

I got a few flat punches, vised it up, and commenced tapping. Spent a couple-three hours working it. Didn't need hard hits. Slowly it looked better. I'm surprised at how it came out! It may have been too deep on the trigger guard tho.

Pics below are original, just punched, and with a minimum of filing.
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Old 09-19-2020, 12:28 PM
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Nice improvement - good job!
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Old 09-19-2020, 12:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pennzy View Post
How is that even done? Looks like traction tape was added.
Author George C. Nonte talks about it in his Pistolsmithing book. He said you hold the punch over the metal, without it touching, and you tap it with a hammer. Seems you go over it like a woodpecker, moving the punch around.

heckIwouldhavejustleftit

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Old 09-19-2020, 12:52 PM
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They also say to hold it loosely so the punch bounces, giving you a lighter and more random pattern.

I'm impressed with the stickiness of the stippled surface, planning on leaving it on the backstrap.
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Old 09-19-2020, 01:50 PM
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Good job. As bad as it looks, I don't see a problem at all, it's fixable. The great work you did already is proof. Stainless is very malleable. The trigger guard is not an area needing strength nor any of the other locations. And there's plenty of thickness on the back strap.

Micro welding would be the quickest. All the metal is still there it just needs to be heated to flow and level it. Then dress it down which will be minimal. I would fix the back strap as well, but that's just me. I'm not a fan of stippling. If your friend that welds is not enthused about doing it, I can recommend two well known micro welders that specialize in micro welding gun repairs. It's amazing what they can fix. You could send them a photo and get an idea of the cost, you may be surprised.

Good luck with your restoration,
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Old 09-19-2020, 04:12 PM
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Gotta go along with Green Frog. Leave it alone. This was made as a "gunfighter's gun". Trade it or sell it to someone who wants to carry it and use it.
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Old 09-19-2020, 04:27 PM
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Put some Pachmyr's on and forget what's under the trigger guard and enjoy it.
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Old 09-19-2020, 04:50 PM
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It CAME with Pachmayrs... thatís how they got the backstrap past me. I actually thought the stippling in front of the guard was tape residue.

But as I say, this was intended as a custom project from the get-go, Iím just learning a little more than expected.
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Old 09-19-2020, 06:43 PM
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I'd actually prefer the stippling to Pachs.
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Old 09-19-2020, 07:11 PM
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Hopefully you got a really good deal when you purchased Bubba's old gun.
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Old 09-19-2020, 10:11 PM
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It appears that "Bubba" has been released and has struck again !
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Old 09-20-2020, 08:21 AM
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Wow! That is some deeeeeeeep stippling. And it looks like the bottom of the trigger guard is serrated, why would anyone want that area serrated? Looks like Bubba went tacti-cool overboard on that poor revolver.
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Old 09-20-2020, 08:57 AM
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It's impressive how much you were able to smooth out that trigger guard stippling. Nice work!

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Originally Posted by stansdds View Post
Wow! That is some deeeeeeeep stippling. And it looks like the bottom of the trigger guard is serrated, why would anyone want that area serrated? Looks like Bubba went tacti-cool overboard on that poor revolver.
I like stippling, but that is pretty aggressive. I like a "softer," more subtle type of stippling. If you've ever seen Novak's "hand matting," that's the kind of texture I like. I just put a set of granulated Talon Grips on my PX4 Compact after sanding them down to such a texture. Still gives me good traction without being abrasive or snagging on clothes.

I've seen some Glock guys stipple the underside of the trigger guard as a reference point for their support hand index finger, but never really saw much value in it.
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Old 09-20-2020, 09:08 AM
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In the words of that Great American Philosopher, Tanya Tucker -
‘It’s a Little Too Late To Do The Right Thing Now.’
It looks deep to me too.
Not sure if you can or should start grinding it off.
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Old 09-20-2020, 09:12 AM
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I’ve seen some amazing filework done on the spines of knives...this might be a good candidate for same treatment !
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Old 09-20-2020, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
Fitz, not Flitz.
Fitz is a style of carry gun trigger guard modification - basically removing the front half of the trigger guard.
If you were joking, you forgot the smiley
I assumed joking... I laughed w/o the smiley face .

WOW ...that's some stipple !
Can that even be "fixed" ...at a loss as to how.
Following this one to see what/how it's fixed .

Whatever you do don't cut away the front of the trigger guard .
I've owned one (cutaway not Fitz Special) ... I don't see the value of the modification ... and it looks odd .
Gary
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Old 09-20-2020, 10:14 AM
mikerjf mikerjf is offline
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Read Fitzís book... he has a chapter on ďtricksĒ, most of which involve twisting an opponents gun in a way that breaks his trigger finger. Then I realized that, with a cutaway guard, that wouldnít happen!

I really think that was his motivation, more than speed or gloves.
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Old 09-20-2020, 10:22 AM
mikerjf mikerjf is offline
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Oh, and as to Bubba, while the stippling looks icky it really really works. Serrating is top quality. There was a red insert nicely fitted into the front sight, the hammer bob looks pro, and probably the best trigger round/polish Iíve ever felt. So I really donít look on this as a Bubba job. And while Iím probably a closet Bubba of some kind myself, Iím really trying to be UnBubba here!

From the source I suspect it has a NYC LEO background.
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  #38  
Old 09-20-2020, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwpercle View Post
Whatever you do don't cut away the front of the trigger guard .
I've owned one (cutaway not Fitz Special) ... I don't see the value of the modification ... and it looks odd .
Gary
FWIW, I have heard of partial Fitz jobs where the front of the trigger guard is cut away on each side while retaining a narrowed section in the middle.
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  #39  
Old 09-20-2020, 03:54 PM
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Me-I would not have bought the gun in the first place unless it was at a givaway price and if then, I'd leave it alone-load it up and throw it in the center console of old blue
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Old 09-20-2020, 04:13 PM
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Nice work, OP. I never thought you'd get that horror show stippling out at all.

Sometimes projects like these are worthwhile just for the sake of learning and the satisfaction of a job well done. It's not always about a return on investment.

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Originally Posted by mikerjf View Post
Making my own zombie-thread for the followup.

I got a few flat punches, vised it up, and commenced tapping. Spent a couple-three hours working it. Didn't need hard hits. Slowly it looked better. I'm surprised at how it came out! It may have been too deep on the trigger guard tho.

Pics below are original, just punched, and with a minimum of filing.
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Old 09-20-2020, 10:10 PM
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Yikes.....

Last edited by Jason Demond; 09-20-2020 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 09-21-2020, 12:30 AM
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I always try (but fail) to understand why people would buy a gun that has been so severely altered and can not ever be brought back to Factory Spec's. I could understand it if the buyer liked and intended on keeping the custom mods, but just don't get it if the desire is to try and restore it to original. Evan if the stippling is removed, Factory grips would never again fit and would always have to me custom modified to fit that gun.

At least to me, there is no price low enough to buy an example like this in the first place - but that's just my personal opinion. I would try to sell it and put whatever money is recovered towards a non Bubba'd gun.
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Old 09-21-2020, 11:25 AM
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I believe he said farther up that the stippling was covered by Pachmayer grips when he bought it.

OP, nice work,re-punching the stippling.
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  #44  
Old 09-21-2020, 12:09 PM
mikerjf mikerjf is offline
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This was purchased for a custom project involving metal removal, *not* to be restored to original. While I'm not a keep-it-orig purist, I'm sympathetic enough to pick something that's already been modded for this kind of project.
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Old 09-21-2020, 01:01 PM
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A small ball peen hammer and a lot of patience.
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