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Howdy folks, I'd like to reshape my ruger bisley grips and was wondering if this project is best accomplished with the grips on or off the frame? Do you use a file or power tools for the job? I'd like to narrow the lower portion of the grips and remove material behind the trigger guard. Thanks.
 

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I guess it depends on how you plan on reshaping them. If you are not going to modify the frame at the same time, take the grips off the gun, one slip even with fine sandpaper and your blue will be gone. If you take them off the gun and put the flat part of the grips together, you should be able to keep them pretty well matched as you work. I am told you have to be careful around the bottom of the grip, as the corners may be fragile. I would be very cautious about using power tools, if you are careful and slow with the files, a little finishing sanding should be all you need after you get them shaped.
 

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It all depends on what you have available and if you have ever worked on grips before.

The ideal machine for shaping grips is an oscillating spindle sander.

When I do final hand sanding and fitting on grips, I use a one inch by 4 1/2 inch rubber spindle sander insert with a piece of sand paper wrapped around it. You used to be able to buy these rubber spindles at Sears, but I don't know if they still carry them.

I guess you could take a piece of garden hose and stick a wooden dowel in it to make it stiff and use it as a sanding block also. The size is ideal for sanding grips.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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On, but cover the frame with muffler tape. It's thin and pretty tough.

I'd start with needle files, then after you get pretty close, use strips of sandpaper. You can run the sandpaper over the muffler tape a bit without going through it, and get everything real close to the frame.

Just remember it's easier to take off than to put back on!
 

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If you're careful, you can do it on the frame. Just stay away from all edges. Don't know much about how Ruger fits their grips but the Italians that did my Colt clones fit the wood perfectly along the edges. You may have to remove the grips if you do work close to the trigger guard so as not to hit it with a file. Definitely want to use files even if the work takes longer as they provide best control. Have found round and round/flat files with generous curvature easy to work with. After getting the grips to where you want them, finish with fine sandpaper. Lightly moisten the bare wood with water to raise any whiskers and allow to thoroughly dry. Lightly sand the bare spots again just enough to remove the whiskers. Wipe with a clean cloth and begin applying your finish. I use Birchwood Casey Tru-Oil in thin coats, lightly sanding and wiping the initial coats until the wood pores are filled, then applying thin coats to the desired thickness. Allow ample time for any coats to dry before applying another coat. Be patient and you will get a beautiful finish.
 
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