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My Big Colt 601 Retro Score and Gigantic Feedback to The Once-Ler!!!

1597 Views 34 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  The Once-Ler
@ The Once-Ler

So I was spending time one night about the first of Oct, reading old posts on ARs. In one post The Once-Ler mentioned he had a Colt 601 Retro he was thinking of selling. I sent him a PM, yes, he said but he had to wait for a response if the other member wanted it. In a few days The Once-Ler got back with me. And our PMs eventually grew to 9 pages!

The only thing I knew for sure about retros was that guys built them. I'd been looking for an un-abused Colt SP1 since forever that was also at a reasonable price, so I jumped on The Once-Ler's rifle and forgot about the SP1.

As I said, I knew nothing and began asking questions which The Once-Ler quickly answered in meticulous detail, way too much info to post here. This went on up until Oct 12 when I got the little darling in my hands at last . . . more on this later.

Anyway, here's his description he sent me explaining what he's done and remains uncompleted on his 601 rifle.

The Once-Ler's 601 Retro Rifle Description:
" I built this rifle in 2014.
• New Nodak Spud "601" Retro flat side lower receiver with 601 style front pivot pin with detent (also has correct rear take down pin with detent)
• Nodak spud retro "601" Retro charging handle
• Nodak spud Retro "waffle" magazine for 601
• "601" upper receiver which I believe I purchased from Apex Gun Parts
• New complete Young Manufacturing chrome slick side chrome BCG with out logo option
• New Green Mountain, GM-M15 20" M16A1 pencil profile barrel, 1:12 twist with "A" style sight, bayonet lug and swivel
• Retro lower parts kit, mostly USGI parts from a parts kit
• Original USGI early style Delta ring
• Original USGI Type "B" A1 butt stock painted green by me, with original USGI buffer (newer style not "Edgewater" buffer)** & buffer spring and 601 butt stock screw with drain hole
• Original "New" USGI triangle fore end stock painted green by me
• Original USGI grip with original green paint and correct grip screw
• new gas tube
• Retro "duckbill" flash suppressor,
• Original USGI Grenade Ring (behind flash suppressor)
There are a few small details that can be done to this rifle to make it completely correct. I reached out to a Mr. John Thomas about 5 years ago to have these done but I never got around to it. Below is the email that he had sent me. Note, that the prices/list are from 7 years ago (2015) but the email correspondence was from 2017. Prices may be higher now. The only thing not addressed is the rear sight adjustment ring. A 601 style ring does not have the numbers in a circle, they only have an arrow with an "R". Although this was not on the list Mr. Thomas may be able to modify one to make it look correct."

I was impressed, also I'd dealt with The Once-Ler before and knew him to be an honest and trustworthy seller that you could take his word to the bank, so no worries about what he said.

Well, I picked up the 601 from my FFL where it sat for a week because he was doing back to back 48 hour shifts (he's a Fire Captain, has to work if no one else will) and in the meantime I'm coming down with Strep Throat!

I'd planned on taking it right to my range and putting some rounds through it . . . had about 10 of my Colt 20 rounders loaded and in my truck too. But by pick up day I was really sick, it was all I could do to drive the 5 miles to my FFL's place and come home. I got out of the truck, unboxed it on the tailgate, loaded a mag in and blasted it off beside my garage, then went in the house to continue being sick.

I'm still under the weather, my nose won't stop running, so I've got to cut this short . . . I've got tons of pics The Once-Ler sent me so I'll post a few here tonight and the rest later, lots of detailed pics too. Then I'll go tend to my nose that won't stop drizzling.

I also want to say what a terrific guy The Once-Ler is. He really took a lot of time and effort teaching me all about the details on these Retro Builds, not to mention the tons of close up detailed pics he took for me to help with his explaining.

Anyway, I'm shutting up and posting the pics now. Thanks for the interest in my new toy.

Original Colt 601 Upper Proofs
Tire Automotive tire Automotive lighting Grey Wood

Auto part Font Bicycle part Carbon Metal

Font Auto part Rectangle Metal Bumper

Automotive tire Grey Wood Tints and shades Metal


Gas Machine Trigger Gun barrel Air gun

Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gas Gun accessory

Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Gas Gun accessory

Trigger Air gun Gun barrel Gun accessory Recreation

Air gun Musical instrument Wood Trigger Gun barrel

Air gun Trigger Machine gun Shotgun Gun barrel


That's all for now . . . lots more to come later!
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When I was stationed in the Philippines in 1985, that was my issued weapon. Green furniture and all. Clark Air Force base is where most of the equipment from Vietnam was transferred to or when you rotated out of Vietnam was left there. I had fond memories of that weapon it was my first in a long line of duty weapons. You never forget your first. Thanks for the great story!
 

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I "think" that waffle mag may be pretty rare, if org. Is the body made of plastic?

Thought I saw/heard somewhere the US was fooling around with disposable mags for the M16 and the plastic waffle design was something they came up with, but dropped eventually maybe due to reliability issues?

Hopefully somebody can chime in with more info? (Random Guy??)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I "think" that waffle mag may be pretty rare, if org. Is the body made of plastic?

Thought I saw/heard somewhere the US was fooling around with disposable mags for the M16 and the plastic waffle design was something they came up with, but dropped eventually maybe due to reliability issues?

Hopefully somebody can chime in with more info? (Random Guy??)
As per The Once-Ler : "Nodak spud Retro "waffle" magazine for 601"
It's a reproduction he bought, not original. Metal body, not plastic.
I read that too about disposable magazines, can't recall where I read it either.
 

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I do like the green furniture. Have you shot it yet? That Duckbill flash hider is unusual? Never seen one like that?
Let us know how she shoots. I assume 55gr bullet wt for your 1:12?
 

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I do like the green furniture. Have you shot it yet? That Duckbill flash hider is unusual? Never seen one like that?
Let us know how she shoots. I assume 55gr bullet wt for your 1:12?
I'd planned on taking it right to my range and putting some rounds through it . . . had about 10 of my Colt 20 rounders loaded and in my truck too. But by pick up day I was really sick, it was all I could do to drive the 5 miles to my FFL's place and come home. I got out of the truck, unboxed it on the tailgate, loaded a mag in and blasted it off beside my garage.

That's all I've shot it so far, it's hunting season now, deal with my cousin is: I can build range but no shooting during hunting season.
Yes, 55 grains is what I'm using. It shoots great for my quick test firing beside my garage which is about 25 yards.
All I know is what The Once-Ler told me, I'll have to ask him about the Duckbill and let you know.
He painted the furniture himself, pretty nice job I think, way better than I could have done :)
He also gave me a Bayonet he painted green too, and an Energy Grenade.

Font Ammunition Metal Missile Artifact


Bag Sleeve Beige Khaki Collar

Drinkware Tin Serveware Door Jewellery
 

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I do like the green furniture. Have you shot it yet? That Duckbill flash hider is unusual? Never seen one like that?
Let us know how she shoots. I assume 55gr bullet wt for your 1:12?
The first Model AR15 (Model 601) had what is often called a "Duck Bill" Flash Suppressor. It was the only real Flash Suppressor available in Vietnam from the introduction of the Colt model 601 in 1960, until about 1962/63 when replaced with the reinforced "3 Prong" because the first version was prone to getting stuck in the tree branches and breaking off. The "3 Prong" was more cone shaped and the spaces between the prongs was made smaller to give it more strength and it also would not snag as much on the branches going through the jungle.

The Duck Bill is appropriate for models: 601, early model 602 and 607 variants.

3 Prong was much more widely deployed (1963-1967) and can basically be used on any variant in the Vietnam War since so many were already in country by 1968.
 
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