Home 1911 Pistols WWI 1911 Shadow Box Complete Assembly

WWI 1911 Shadow Box Complete Assembly

Box assembled and ready to hang.

A few months ago, I shared with our readers the story about a WWI 1911 that we saved from destruction. The pistol has seen better days and can’t be made into shootable condition without some significant surgery. So after some discussions with Freeze, we decided to retire it and move it into my office. Hence the Shadow Box Project.


Box assembled and ready to hang.
Box assembled and ready to hang.

Many of you have asked how we mounted the items without damaging them. What we did was find a shadowbox design on-line that uses a steel backing and magnets to hold the items in place. A perfect solution for a firearm since I don’t wish to cement, wire, or otherwise attach anything to a historic gun. Pretty neat. This vendor does business under a few different names: Paraderest.org, Bladedisplay.com & “Mike @ Command” on ebay.  Now for the bad news.  When the shadow box arrived it made a terrible impression.

The construction seemed very ad hoc and amateurish while the finished product was literally filthy. If it had been cheaper, I would have understood. But for the price and the way it is represented as museum quality, I most likely won’t be buying a second.

I also did order a black-powder rifle stand and it seems fine, however.

Rare earth magnets are the trick to holding guns with some weight. On the items in the shadow box that don’t possess anything a magnet can attract, we solved that problem by inserting a second small magnet inside: Notably the magazine pouch and leather holster.

Anyone know where I can get another one for similar projects?

“Shooting Guns & Having Fun”