Keep in mind that heat treating was done in a completely different way back then. Spot heat treating was the common approach. Be careful how you mod. Personally, I would carry any gun if it was all I had. If it has collector value at all, more than a new gun, sell it and buy a more appropriate gun. Heck even $300 will get you a good gun on the used market if you look hard and are careful with your purchase.
Igitur qui desiderat pacem praeparet bellum. . .Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus, et Fidelis. . . .Nemo me impune lacessit . . .Veritas vos Liberabit. . . .ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ! . . . .Write, speak, do!