Quantcast
  1. Sign up now and join over 35,000 northwest gun owners. It's quick, easy, and 100% free!

Considering a 1911, Don't know much

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by RallySoob, Mar 20, 2009.

  1. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    26
    Just found out about 5 mins ago I'm gett'n a bonus at work for exceeding standards and I've already got the loot for the other pistol I want so now I'm thinking its prime time to pop the 1911 cherry. I've only shot one before, it was a colt gov model and I cant say I was too thrilled but after visiting a local shop and holding the colt gold cup the other day I started itching. They are beautiful guns.



    A few questions I have:

    What is a good one to buy for someone that wants to use it alot, holster it often, seeks ultimate reliability and better than most handguns type of accuracy?

    Are upgraded sights, grips, bbls, etc all compatible with eachother like the AR15? I want to customize it 'alot' over time

    Do you have to spend 1K+ to get great accuracy and reliability?

    Are they high maintenance and finicky for the most part like I've heard in the past about some models? I'm not a gunsmith, at all...

    Why is it that people are so into these pistols and how is it you can buy a new one for 400-500 and then some are up in the 2000-3000 range when they are of the same platform?

    I look at everything like the AR15 because I understand the market and makeup of the platform but don't have a clue what is going on in the 1911 world.

    I know this post is convaluted and noobish so take it easy on me please. :poke:
     
  2. PlayboyPenguin

    PlayboyPenguin Pacific Northwest Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    4,833
    Likes Received:
    1,744
    There is a lot of ground to cover with all those questions. The first thing I would say is "do not buy one." You said yourself that you were not impressed when you shot the one you did. I would try out many more of them before buying one if your first experience was not positive.

    As for price, it is like all things. You get what you pay for to a certain extent...but after a while the law of diminishing returns kicks in.

    Most of the accessories are interchangeable to a certain extent, but not always. You need to make sure you are getting the right part for the right gun.

    For about $700 you can get a very nice Colt Combat Commander. I have found both of mine to be very reliable and very accurate.
     
  3. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    26
    I do need to shoot a nice one huh.

    Then just answer me this. Why do people love 1911's so much? Is it performance or a collector thing? I know Jim Jacobe who instructed my CHL class carries a full size 1911 so if he depends on it with his life I would think it must be a performer right?
     
  4. PlayboyPenguin

    PlayboyPenguin Pacific Northwest Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    4,833
    Likes Received:
    1,744
    The same reason some people love Glock, some people love Sigs, some people like revolvers, etc.

    Something about the design and function of the gun strikes a cord with them. They find it meets their needs and they usually find it aesthetically pleasing as well. From your post, it does not seem the platform struck that cord with you. :)
     
  5. asiparks

    asiparks PDX Active Member

    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    121
    I've collected a motley array of different handguns in 9mm and .45, Glocks, CZs Berettas, Brownings, Sigs, HKs and various brands of 1911 whilst searching for my ideal gun. I try to make an effort to shoot them all, but I continually come back to the 1911 as it points well, has a consistant, controllable and crisp trigger and great ergonomics which for me means consistant, accurate shooting. I can't seem to shoot any of my other guns as accurately, though I don't doubt that they are probably as mechanically accurate.
    Oh, and i do like the way it looks, though i think my Brownings are prettier...
    Now just because it works for me doesn't really mean anything for you, and as PP alludes to above, don't buy a gun you don't really like just because everyone else has it and you think you might be missing out on something.

    As far as cost, well, you can buy an $850 AR or a $3000 dollar AR too. My expensive 1911's probably offer a marginal ( if any) increase in accuracy over my cheaper ones, but there is an appreciable increase in fit and finish, though as said earlier diminishing returns apply.
    There is a difference in "feel" between different 1911's, though this is highly subjective, based upon, say, the roundness and checkering of the frontstrap, the undercut of the triggerguard and beavertail, but these are often not a result of increased price...thoughtful brands such as Dan Wesson engineer them in....
     
  6. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    I've yet to find anyone who's hands did not fit a 1911, can't say that about any other gun.

    The why of the 1911 are numerous...easy to work on, easy to shoot, fits everyone, those are but a few.

    For quality, I would go with Colt first. Especially if you want to upgrade/customize over time. I would look for something used but not abused.
    If you're not partial to a firing pin safety, I would look at the Series 70, or like models.....full or Commander size.

    Start with something like a Gov model, no use in buying one with bells & whistles if you think you might upgrade. Do pay for what you may not want.
     
  7. Rackir

    Rackir Gresham, or Member

    Messages:
    49
    Likes Received:
    2
    Like the above poster said, alot of the increase in price is for slightlly better fit and finish, and in many cases just finish/brand.
    Value for the money prompted me to get a Taurus pt1911 as my first (and so far only) 1911. It's proven to be very reliable, and far more accurate than I am (and I'm honestlly a pretty fair shot). Some people have had trouble with the ambi safty that Taurus uses, but those problems seem to have diminished over time. Finish isn't the best and mine is already showing some holster wear after about 4 months of regular carry, but since I bought this gun with the intention of not baby'ing it like I do my others, I find this to be totally acceptable. One of the things I like about it is that most 1911 parts will drop in with little or no modifications needed. The sights are a little different than the original, but most manufactureres now make dedicated pt1911 sites cut to fit.
    I was unsure about the 1911 platform when I got mine as well, but I have to say, mine shoots so well and points so naturally that it's made a believer out of me.
     
  8. doubleactiononly

    doubleactiononly Seattle Member

    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    Along with what everyone else has said, read this:
    http://xavierthoughts.blogspot.com/2008/07/choosing-your-first-1911.html

    The 1911's I would recommend as a 1st (in this order) are:
    - any Colt in .45acp
    - STI Trojan
    - Springfield GI, Mil-Spec or Loaded
    - Taurus PT1911
    - RIA 1911

    Also, as a Gold Cup owner, I would have to caution you that they look weird, compared to other 1911's available today. The grip safety is butt ugly, the rear sight hangs too far off the back, and the extractor is not flush with the frame. That being said, mine easily shoots a 1.5" group at 15 yards, and anyway all those issues are just cosmetic!
     
  9. oldkim

    oldkim Kent, WA New Member

    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    1
    Man, like you said it's very much like an AR. Which one is right for you?

    Do know they have very similiar traits - you can customize: buy it fully set up or buy a bare bones frame and build up from the ground up. All depends on what and how.

    The what is - what do you want it to do. Sounds like you want accuracy and functionality, who doesn't.

    The how is - how much are you willing to spend. Money and time to get the above qualities?

    So, if you are set in getting a 1911 type pistol and sounds like your pretty new to this semi type of firearm. Go to a good rental range and shoot all they have for rent. Try out a few and you can get a feel for the actions and how shootable they are in your hands.


    ---------------------------------
    A few questions I have:

    What is a good one to buy for someone that wants to use it alot, holster it often, seeks ultimate reliability and better than most handguns type of accuracy?
    Cost is going to limit you so all depends on how much you have to spend

    Are upgraded sights, grips, bbls, etc all compatible with eachother like the AR15? I want to customize it 'alot' over time
    Yes, just make sure it'll fit your particular frame and setup

    Do you have to spend 1K+ to get great accuracy and reliability?
    Yes and no. But you do pay for what you pay for.

    Are they high maintenance and finicky for the most part like I've heard in the past about some models? I'm not a gunsmith, at all...
    Depends but overall the design of the 1911 has proven itself

    Why is it that people are so into these pistols and how is it you can buy a new one for 400-500 and then some are up in the 2000-3000 range when they are of the same platform?
    Piece of history. Design and feel. Piece of art to many.


    Go out and shoot a lot of them and then make an informed decision.
     
  10. 9mmD

    9mmD sw wa Member

    Messages:
    306
    Likes Received:
    4

    Dont rule out the kimber's also. Alittle more $$ but worth it IMO
     
  11. KENOC

    KENOC Portland area Member

    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    8
    Just picked up a Rock Island 1911. Looks sweet, is tight, and my Gunsmith was impressed at the quality, considering I got the 1911 Tactical at about half a Springfield 1911 costs....even the finish is nice. You might want to consider one of these...
     
  12. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    Back in the 80's when Wilsons and the like were all the craze, everyone wanted one, or one that had the same features. But those features cost money that some couldn't afford.

    So the makers responded and came out with models that 'look' like the higher priced models, but the quality is no where near the same. There's a reason why Kimbers cost less than a Wilson, Brown, Bear, Nighthawk etc. It's called quality.

    Kimber employs assemblers, and their parts are being made by contractors over seas...you won't find that at the above semi-custom makers.

    Corners have to be cut somewhere to keep the cost down. Don't let the bells, whistles and fancy paint fool you...look under the hood, that's where it counts.
     
  13. asiparks

    asiparks PDX Active Member

    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    121
    For sure a difference between assembling a 1911 and fitting a 1911. Kimbers are all "assembled" from the base custom up to the Super Match, and that's pretty poor considering a portion of their line is in Brown and Baer ( and RRA RIP) territory.

    I have had Colts, still have 2, a 70's GCNM and a highly modded 1991 commander.
    I would likely never buy a Colt again, their quality control of late is appalling and the value for money is poor compared to Dan Wesson, STI and Springfield. The only appeal is the romance of having a Pony on the side and the relatively good resale value to other people who like having a pony on the side.

    Sig, STI and Springfield offer good value, if you want a base model springfield get the Mil Spec, not the GI, the sights and fitting are worth the difference. The base Kimber Custom II is as well put together as anything else in their line and the price is good...
     
  14. PlayboyPenguin

    PlayboyPenguin Pacific Northwest Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    4,833
    Likes Received:
    1,744
    I think your opinions on Colt are outdated. That might have been true in the late 80's and early 90's but it not true today. Their QC and precision craftsmanship is top notch.
     
  15. asiparks

    asiparks PDX Active Member

    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    121
    Not so much an opinion based on notions, or all internet chatter sir. In fact I would like to buy a Colt, specifically a 70's re issue, but the 2 (out of 2) I've seen had the off center recoil plug channel, something I'd been warned to look for by those over on 1911forum. It's a real issue. There seems to be a number of them at the moment, brought to light by, largely, Colt fans.

    I have no particular brand loyalty. Right now I think Dan Wesson puts out the best value 1911, based upon features, the quality of the parts used, fitting and finish. Unfortunately, they're nigh on impossible to find.
    If DW goes downhill or Colt, Springfield, Kimber can match them, I'll buy them instead...
     
  16. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797
    Yes Colt is having some problems with a couple of their model lines right now, but they will get worked out. I have talked to a couple of their QC people, things should get going with the next lot coming out.

    asiparks said;
    "....value for money is poor compared to Dan Wesson, STI and Springfield. The only appeal is the romance of having a Pony on the side and the relatively good resale value to other people who like having a pony on the side."

    Please explain where the value is poor compared to the makers you stated.

    You really think some of the Kimbers are on par with Baer & Brown? What makes you think that?

    When was the last time you had one apart, and looked how they are put together and the quality of the parts used?

    There's a reason why Kimbers are cheaper than the semi-customs.
     
  17. asiparks

    asiparks PDX Active Member

    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    121
    I think i said "pretty poor" relative to Baer and Brown
     
  18. wichaka

    wichaka Wa State Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,374
    Likes Received:
    797

    I took it as you saying a portion of their (Kimber) line is up there with Brown & Baer.
     
  19. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    26

    Thanks for the link gregmli...

    Lots of good advise here, more than I thought I was going to get. I definately have a better understanding of whats what. I'm in between building from the frame up or possibly looking at some STi's as my 1st 1911. I like their style

    Thanks Again
     
  20. USMC1911

    USMC1911 Salem Active Member

    Messages:
    241
    Likes Received:
    48
    I think he is refering to price...