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Old 02-08-2009, 11:35 PM
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Default OK, 1911 aficionados, what do you recommend?

Let's say that, hypothetically, I was looking to purchase a 1911. And please note that this does not mean I will be doing so anytime soon. Right now, my priority is to purchase an M4gery before Obama and Biden try to ban them, which I expect will set me back $1,000 at least. Next after that, I'm planning on buying something for concealed carry.

But let's say that, once I get those priorities out of the way, I decided to invest money in a 1911. In this scenario, what are your recommendations? My criteria are as follows:

-I would only want a high-quality 1911, such as a newer production Colt or even an STI. I wouldn't settle for anything of lower cost/quality such as a Taurus or S&W 1911 clone, just because that was all I could afford at the time. I am very patient and fiscally conservative when I want to buy a new gun, so money would not be an issue.

-I prefer single-stack to double-stack, seeing as I expect my 1911 would mostly be a range gun (that, and the fact that I don't expect to get ambushed by a team of masked commandos in my apartment any time soon).

-I also don't need a DA gun.

-I would want high-quality wood grips instead of something newer, like plastic or rubber.

-Adjustable sights from the factory would be nice.

-I would also prefer cocking serrations only at the rear, not additional ones at the front, though I may or may not overlook this.


So, fire away.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:08 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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Interesting specs - I would say actually buy a basic Springfield or Kahr GI clone and build it up from there so you get exactly what you want. Out of curiosity, why don't you want front slide serrations? I'm quite partial to them. Don't buy a Colt - they make nicely finished guns, but you're mostly paying for the name.

You'll also find that with an STI or other high-end 1911, they usually tend to to very tight - which is great for mechanical accuracy but a real headache for reliability. Fact is unless you're in the top 5th percentile of shooters, you're never gonna shoot a handgun well enough to notice the difference. When I worked at the gunshop I found that coming up all the time with our Kimbers.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:50 AM
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You'd probably want a Commander sized 1911, since it is the medium sized gun. DON'T buy any of that lightweight alloy crap because alloy frames crack after shooting enough. If money isn't a factor, a smaller sized Kimber might work (you could buy wood grips), although I'd recommend you buy rubber pachmyrs. My dad has those on his Series 70 and they fit the hand well. If you want a little gun with a lot of bullets, get one of the Para-Ordnance compacts like one of the Warthogs. Those little things hold 10+1 when a conventional compact 1911 holds 6+1. The grips are plastic but I'm sure they can be replaced. Like Nyles says, you can't jsut buy the perfect 1911 from the box, you have to build it. If you want nice sights, buy them and fit them. Want wood grips, buy them and fit them. The customization is endless! That's what makes 1911s great. But if you don't like the recoil of a .45, I recommend you buy a full size, it makes recoil a little easier to handle in some guns.

I just remembered I shot a Kimber 1911 compact that I have to say was the best little 1911 I ever shot. It was stainless, had Novak night sights, and recoil was close to 9mm. It was great. Now that I remember that, buy a Kimber. That little gun was sweet.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Gunmaster45 View Post
You'd probably want a Commander sized 1911, since it is the medium sized gun. DON'T buy any of that lightweight alloy crap because alloy frames crack after shooting enough. If money isn't a factor, a smaller sized Kimber might work (you could buy wood grips), although I'd recommend you buy rubber pachmyrs. My dad has those on his Series 70 and they fit the hand well. If you want a little gun with a lot of bullets, get one of the Para-Ordnance compacts like one of the Warthogs. Those little things hold 10+1 when a conventional compact 1911 holds 6+1. The grips are plastic but I'm sure they can be replaced. Like Nyles says, you can't jsut buy the perfect 1911 from the box, you have to build it. If you want nice sights, buy them and fit them. Want wood grips, buy them and fit them. The customization is endless! That's what makes 1911s great. But if you don't like the recoil of a .45, I recommend you buy a full size, it makes recoil a little easier to handle in some guns.

I just remembered I shot a Kimber 1911 compact that I have to say was the best little 1911 I ever shot. It was stainless, had Novak night sights, and recoil was close to 9mm. It was great. Now that I remember that, buy a Kimber. That little gun was sweet.
Eh, my SIG P226 has an alloy frame. I'm not of the opinion alloy is all that bad, though it's certainly not preferable to steel.

Anyway, I'm actually not sure I would want a smaller-size 1911. I would prefer something full-sized, just like the standard service model. A semi-compact like the Commander isn't really necessary to me. I would inevitably buy multiple sets of grips (like I already have for my P226, and as I had for my PT92), but I would prefer some quality wood grips from the factory, just because I associate that with the classic-style 1911.

I'm also not so sure about Para-Ordnance. I've heard good and bad stuff about them all, but all of the ones I've inspected didn't impress me. They're good guns for the money, I guess, but I can't get over the fact that they still feel like they were built with sales quantity in mind.

BTW, my uncle bought my cousin an STI 1911 for his 30th birthday last year. If I ever visit them again, I'll have to check that out.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nyles View Post
Interesting specs - I would say actually buy a basic Springfield or Kahr GI clone and build it up from there so you get exactly what you want. Out of curiosity, why don't you want front slide serrations? I'm quite partial to them. Don't buy a Colt - they make nicely finished guns, but you're mostly paying for the name.

You'll also find that with an STI or other high-end 1911, they usually tend to to very tight - which is great for mechanical accuracy but a real headache for reliability. Fact is unless you're in the top 5th percentile of shooters, you're never gonna shoot a handgun well enough to notice the difference. When I worked at the gunshop I found that coming up all the time with our Kimbers.
A Springfield would be nice, I suppose. Interestingly enough, the only 1911 I've fired in my life was a Springfield belonging to an uncle (I can't remember exactly what model, all I know is that it was something they offered in the mid-90s which may or may not be in their catalog today).

Front slide serrations are one of those things that, like Picatinny rails, I just can't seem to love, as I feel they ruin the gun's appearance. I'm pretty conservative about how guns look, I guess.

Also, I would definitely take reliability over accuracy, seeing as I don't expect to match the best IPSC shooters any time soon (I simply don't have that ambition, nor the time to practice even if I did).
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:27 AM
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My dad and I are building a custom 1911 now using a P-14 frame with a Colt slide, and adding one of my compensators on it, as well as some other small mods. It'll be cool. We're really gonna deck it out, father and son work.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:31 PM
Yournamehere Yournamehere is offline
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As far as the front cocking serrations go, I used to hate them too, but I find that when I check the chamber or charge my pistol, I go for the front sometimes rather the back, just cause I get a better grip. It's also more uesful if you're trying to lock the slide without an empty magazine, as you can't reach the damn slide stop while holding it in hand. Hell if I had the money, I'd get front cocking serrations on the 5906 and the .45. Maybe even the Model 19! lol

I recommend the buildup idea, if you have the time and determination, not to mention the money. If you don't, get a Springfield Loaded, you can get one with adjustable sights or Novaks, which I myself would prefer. Other than that, what they say about the Kimbers is pretty much true too. If you're not picky about the finish, go stainless too. Makes cleaning and maintenance a million times easier than any other finish treatment.

Also, in my humble opinion, if you ever get that 4506 back, that will do pretty much everything any super cool 1911 will do, and you won't feel bad cause you didn't pay a grand for it either. But that's just me, Smith & Wesson loving me.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:35 PM
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As far as the front cocking serrations go, I used to hate them too, but I find that when I check the chamber or charge my pistol, I go for the front sometimes rather the back, just cause I get a better grip.
You check the chamber by physically raking the slide? Can't say I'm in the habit of doing this myself.

I understand its practical use, but again, I just think it tends to make the gun look f'ugly. Same with Picatinny rails.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yournamehere View Post
Also, in my humble opinion, if you ever get that 4506 back, that will do pretty much everything any super cool 1911 will do, and you won't feel bad cause you didn't pay a grand for it either. But that's just me, Smith & Wesson loving me.
Actually, I didn't pay a penny for the 4506, my grandfather gave it to me as a birthday present. It was his before it was mine. And he really didn't enjoy shooting it any more than I do.

I guess the difference for me is that 1911s have the historical pedigree that Smiths don't have. It's the only reason I might tend to overlook the fact that I'm not really such a huge fan of .45 ACP.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunmaster45 View Post
My dad and I are building a custom 1911 now using a P-14 frame with a Colt slide, and adding one of my compensators on it, as well as some other small mods. It'll be cool. We're really gonna deck it out, father and son work.
Sounds like fun. But how much effort does it take to fit a P14 frame to a Colt slide?
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  #10  
Old 02-11-2009, 10:45 PM
achmed
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my friend lent us his les baer custom, and it was the best 1911 i've seen or heard of.

it probably ran about $3,000.
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