Classic 1911 suggestions??? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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mr_fender
07-06-2012, 19:24
Hey folks. I've been itching to rejoin the 1911 family and could use some feedback. I'm looking to pickup a classic government model with a more Mil-spec look. I've thought about picking up a cheaper GI model like a RIA or Auto Ordinance and replacing some of the sub-par parts with quality stuff, but would it be worthwhile to just spend more up front and pick up something like a Springfield Mil-Spec or Colt 1991? Anyone have any suggestions on a good quality classic 1911. I'd like the price to stay as low as possible, but I know quality doesn't come cheap. I want the clean classic look, but it has to be reliable. I'm leaning towards carbon steel (blued, parkerized, etc.), but I do like Stainless models too. Any thoughts?

Tim151515
07-06-2012, 19:59
Hey folks. I've been itching to rejoin the 1911 family and could use some feedback. I'm looking to pickup a classic government model with a more Mil-spec look. I've thought about picking up a cheaper GI model like a RIA or Auto Ordinance and replacing some of the sub-par parts with quality stuff, but would it be worthwhile to just spend more up front and pick up something like a Springfield Mil-Spec or Colt 1991? Anyone have any suggestions on a good quality classic 1911. I'd like the price to stay as low as possible, but I know quality doesn't come cheap. I want the clean classic look, but it has to be reliable. I'm leaning towards carbon steel (blued, parkerized, etc.), but I do like Stainless models too. Any thoughts?


Id go with either springer or remington. I have a remington and they are fantastic. Very well built, very tight, very accurate. Plus they have the cool factor of being the first remington 1911s since world war 1.

bac1023
07-06-2012, 20:12
Just get a nice Springfield GI and be done with it.

bac1023
07-06-2012, 20:12
Id go with either springer or remington. I have a remington and they are fantastic. Very well built, very tight, very accurate. Plus they have the cool factor of being the first remington 1911s since world war 1.

The Remingtons are nice, but I hate the fact that they include a firing pin safety.

Tim151515
07-06-2012, 20:17
The Remingtons are nice, but I hate the fact that they include a firing pin safety.

very true. The 80s style arent very popular.

bac1023
07-06-2012, 20:20
very true. The 80s style arent very popular.

No FPS is, actually.

mr_fender
07-06-2012, 21:47
Does the series 80 setup really make that much of a difference? I don't think I've ever fired a 1911 with that setup. Shot a few older (pre 80's) Colts and the Kimber 9mm I used to own had the Schwartz safety that didn't feel any different. I'm not looking for a 2lb competition trigger. As long as the break is crisp, I don't mind a little heavier trigger. How does the series 80 trigger differ? Takeup? Break? Reset? Just wondering...

Rinspeed
07-06-2012, 21:53
The Remingtons are nice, but I hate the fact that they include a firing pin safety.




I hate the fact that the GI uses a two piece barrel. :wavey:

eyelikeglasses
07-06-2012, 21:59
I've thought about picking up a cheaper GI model like a RIA or Auto Ordinance and replacing some of the sub-par parts with quality stuff, / Any thoughts?

What parts are sub-par on a RIA? None of them have a firing pin block/safety.:upeyes:

brisk21
07-06-2012, 22:01
Blued Colt series '70. Either new or used, thats what I'd get. Even if it means saving up for an extra few months. You just can't go wrong.

Tim151515
07-06-2012, 22:11
Blued Colt series '70. Either new or used, thats what I'd get. Even if it means saving up for an extra few months. You just can't go wrong.

If you get a Colt you will def. be getting, by far, the best looking roll mark ever. IMO anyways.

mr_fender
07-06-2012, 22:49
What parts are sub-par on a RIA? None of them have a firing pin block/safety.:upeyes:

More of an if/as needed thing. I'm not an anti-MIM snob or anything, but the huge price difference in entry level 1911's makes me cautious is all. I have heard great things about the RIA's.

fnfalman
07-06-2012, 23:32
What about find a used Colt Series 70 or older?

Jason D
07-07-2012, 17:06
If you want a half way decent pistol in the GI type configuration, there are tons on the market that will keep the price low. From the better Springfield GI and Milspec models, to the Philippine made guns.

Now if you only want to buy one gun and no others.
You may as well go with the Colt series 70's they are making today. You get a well built gun with the Colt name on it, and none of the added on lawyer bull crap.

bac1023
07-07-2012, 17:46
Does the series 80 setup really make that much of a difference? I don't think I've ever fired a 1911 with that setup. Shot a few older (pre 80's) Colts and the Kimber 9mm I used to own had the Schwartz safety that didn't feel any different. I'm not looking for a 2lb competition trigger. As long as the break is crisp, I don't mind a little heavier trigger. How does the series 80 trigger differ? Takeup? Break? Reset? Just wondering...

Its not so much that as the fact that you said you wanted a classic 1911.

The Remington is far from it.

fnfalman
07-07-2012, 18:59
Does the series 80 setup really make that much of a difference? I don't think I've ever fired a 1911 with that setup. Shot a few older (pre 80's) Colts and the Kimber 9mm I used to own had the Schwartz safety that didn't feel any different. I'm not looking for a 2lb competition trigger. As long as the break is crisp, I don't mind a little heavier trigger. How does the series 80 trigger differ? Takeup? Break? Reset? Just wondering...

If you blindfold yourself so that you don't know which gun has which trigger safety or lack thereof, you can't tell the difference.

mr_fender
07-08-2012, 00:03
A new Colt series 70 would be really nice, but is it really worth the extra $300+ over something like a Springfield Mil-Spec or extra $150+ over a series 80 1991? Seems like both Colts and Springfields are getting kind of hard to find. A lot of the online sellers are out of stock in many of their models too.

fnfalman
07-08-2012, 02:11
Is it worth the extra $150 over Series 80? To me, yes. However, if I were to have to wait for one while a Series 80 is immediately available...I wouldn't wait. But that's me. The firing pin safety doesn't bother me that much.

eyelikeglasses
07-08-2012, 14:18
If you blindfold yourself so that you don't know which gun has which trigger safety or lack thereof, you can't tell the difference.

Nice to hear your opinion on that, since you have both.

deguelo
07-08-2012, 15:44
No FPS is, actually.

not among 1911 cognoscenti, i would think. regards-- deguelo

257 roberts
07-08-2012, 16:39
you can buy my 1975 Colt series 70 Government/LNIB satin nickled finish(round ct less than 100rds) for $900.00 and be done.(been sitting in my safe for over 35 yrs)

jakebrake
07-08-2012, 16:49
Just get a nice Springfield GI and be done with it.

plus 1

jrs93accord
07-08-2012, 18:04
If you get a Colt you will def. be getting, by far, the best looking roll mark ever. IMO anyways.

These are two of the nicest examples of a 1911. The roll marks mimic the early Colts.

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/006-2.jpg

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/004-4.jpg

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/005-2.jpg

The blued model is absolutely astounding. The bluing is beautiful.

These are Cimarron Arms 1911s made in the Phillipines. IIRC, they are made by RIA. Brian, correct me if I am wrong. It is hard to keep them straight.

brisk21
07-08-2012, 21:07
If you blindfold yourself so that you don't know which gun has which trigger safety or lack thereof, you can't tell the difference.


Maybe, but it depends on the gun. Ive fired a few kimbers and a few Colts, and I can definately tell a difference vs. my TRP. Maybe I couldn't with a GI model, but a gun with a good trigger job like my TRP there is a noticable difference. I can feel the trigger dragging a little on the FPS guns. It is negligable though.

faawrenchbndr
07-09-2012, 06:41
Springfield GI if you are on a budget.
Colt Series 70 if you can afford a few more bucks.

Avoid the Colt 1991, very poor in retaining value.
Series 80 triggers CAN be worked to the point of feeling like a
series 70, but it takes a pistol smith like Chuck Rogers.

Brucev
07-09-2012, 07:13
RE: OP. From what you write, I'd suggest the RIA 1911 or the SA 1911 GI/Mil-Spec. If you can spend a bit more money... the Colt 1991 is great. A SA 1911 in SS would be ideal for just about every purpose.

FLIPPER 348
07-09-2012, 07:26
No FPS is, actually.



just remove it

mr_fender
07-09-2012, 11:38
Maybe, but it depends on the gun. Ive fired a few kimbers and a few Colts, and I can definately tell a difference vs. my TRP. Maybe I couldn't with a GI model, but a gun with a good trigger job like my TRP there is a noticable difference. I can feel the trigger dragging a little on the FPS guns. It is negligable though.

Kimber uses the Schwartz safety, which is disabled by the grip safety. It is in no way tied to the trigger, so the Kimber trigger is basically a series 70 setup. However, if the grip safety isn't fit correctly, the Schwartz safety could possible fail to reliably release the firing pin and could cause misfires or light primer strikes. Could make it sensitive to how you grip the frame as well. Never had any issues with it myself, but I guess it's another potential chink in the armor.

mr_fender
07-14-2012, 00:26
I've been looking at the Remington R1 a bit online and it seems pretty nice. It also has a lot of very positive reviews. Anyone have any first hand experience with the Remy? Any issues of concern? Series 80 and a cast frame aren't a big deal to me. It is a very nice looking weapon. The stainless version looks amazing too. I like the flat MSH and dovetailed front sight too. It's USA made and also a little cheaper and more readily available than the Mil-Spec too. How durable is their oxide finish? I know it's not exactly a mil-spec configuration, but that doesn't bother me. It's mostly front cocking serrations that I don't care for. I like the clean slide and classic vertical serrations on the R1. The Remy logo is a tiny bit large, but clean and tastefully executed. The old school GI thumb safety looks really cool too.

TxGlock9
07-14-2012, 02:27
Id go with either springer or remington. I have a remington and they are fantastic. Very well built, very tight, very accurate. Plus they have the cool factor of being the first remington 1911s since world war 1.

The Remington's I've handled weren't very tight as you put it. Maybe you got a good one.

pezzulli
07-17-2012, 10:48
Blued Colt series '70. Either new or used, thats what I'd get. Even if it means saving up for an extra few months. You just can't go wrong.

+1 With a preference toward the new Colt Series 70

dakrat
07-17-2012, 13:30
Springfield GI or Mil-spec
Colt 70 series

RonS
07-18-2012, 09:37
Just before the downturn in 2008 I bought a new SA GI Champion.

I tried to bevel the extractor to smooth feeding and found that it was too soft for my tastes so I replaced it with a Wilson. Since I wanted to fit it and the FP retainer I bought a EGW and fit them. I didn't like the trigger pull and the factory parts didn't seem to want to polish well so I put a Cylinder & Slide USMC set in it along with a C&S sear spring.

I still want to upgrade the sights but that is a hassle because of the GI sights cuts and the need for the correct tool or paying someone to mill the sight cuts.

Even after all that I still have a gun with no bushing and a milled out frame for the "fully supported" barrel.

Short version, if I had added the cost of the upgrades to the price of the GI I could have had a new Colt Commander.

I do this to myself all the time, it seems to be a theme, I just find it hard to invest in quality up front instead of messing around trying to make something into what I want.

If I ever buy another 1911 it will be a Colt.

mr_fender
07-18-2012, 19:23
Yep. I think modding has to approached as more of a hobby enterprise and not so much a way to save money. You will usually end up spending more in the long haul. There are some exceptions though, like when you simply cannot find the configuration you want in a factory offering.

After much searching and shopping, I've narrowed it down to Springfield and Remington. Right now Springfield is on top due to the forged frame and lifetime warranty. Remington's warranty is only 2 years, but that oxide finish is nice looking.

As for Springfield, the Mil-Spec is the model I'm looking at. I do like the vertical serrations of the GI better, but the 3 dot sights are MUCH better on the Mil-spec. The rear sight is no problem to swap on the GI, but how tough is it to re-stake a front sight on a 1911? If it's a real PITA, I'll probably just stick with the mil-spec.

mr_fender
07-18-2012, 19:30
Oh yeah, I had a chance to compare a Remington R1 and a Springfield Range Officer today. Cabela's didn't have any mil-specs, so the Range Office was the stand in. The Springfield was tighter, smoother, and had a much better trigger. The Remington looked great, but the trigger had quite a bit more creep. Both had a very tight barrel lockup with no play at all. That Range Officer was very nice, but I don't care for the huge adjustable rear sight.

SIGMA 40
07-18-2012, 19:44
I was at my local range last week.. I rented a Kimber and a Springfield GI and I honestly have to say I liked the Springfield better.

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Lethaltxn
07-18-2012, 19:58
Oh yeah, I had a chance to compare a Remington R1 and a Springfield Range Officer today. Cabela's didn't have any mil-specs, so the Range Office was the stand in. The Springfield was tighter, smoother, and had a much better trigger. The Remington looked great, but the trigger had quite a bit more creep. Both had a very tight barrel lockup with no play at all. That Range Officer was very nice, but I don't care for the huge adjustable rear sight.

Range officer is an excellent bang for the buck 1911. I almost bought one a couple years ago but opted for a lightweight champ operator instead, which i loved but unfortunately had to sell and I regret it to this day.
I'd say get the RO and just switch out the sights.

Lethaltxn
07-18-2012, 19:59
I was at my local range last week.. I rented a Kimber and a Springfield GI and I honestly have to say I liked the Springfield better.

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I agree. I had a custom TLE II as my first 1911 and I think my current springers are much better. JMO.

mr_fender
07-18-2012, 21:19
The 9mm Kimber I used to have was a looker and was very accurate, but the fit was not the best and it had recurring feeding and extraction issues. Barrel lockup was tight, slide fit was decent, extractor fit was very loose and clocked about 30 degrees, and the firing pin stop was so sloppy loose that it would fall out if the firing pin was pushed in. Thumb safety was nice and crisp, but the beavertail fit was quite loose. The ejector also rocked loose after about 500 rounds and had to be re-pinned. Overall, I was not impressed with the attention to detail. I hear their .45 ACP guns are better and more reliable, but my experience kinda soured me on Kimbers.

Lethaltxn
07-19-2012, 07:55
The 9mm Kimber I used to have was a looker and was very accurate, but the fit was not the best and it had recurring feeding and extraction issues. Barrel lockup was tight, slide fit was decent, extractor fit was very loose and clocked about 30 degrees, and the firing pin stop was so sloppy loose that it would fall out if the firing pin was pushed in. Thumb safety was nice and crisp, but the beavertail fit was quite loose. The ejector also rocked loose after about 500 rounds and had to be re-pinned. Overall, I was not impressed with the attention to detail. I hear their .45 ACP guns are better and more reliable, but my experience kinda soured me on Kimbers.

I think kimbers are fine, but for the money they want I personally believe they should be much better. Especially when companies like Springfield offer you more for less.
JMO.

jerryd
07-19-2012, 09:35
Get yourself a nice colt 70s series blue and you wont look back!!!

mr_fender
07-21-2012, 16:04
I made the rounds today in Austin and hit all the local gun shops. I compared as many 1911's as I could. I've finally settled on a Springfield Mil-Spec. None of the shops had the parkerized version, but McBrides did have 2 NM serial stainless mil-specs. They were both very nice and fit very well. As nice as they were, I'm going to hold out for a parkerized one. I love stainless guns, but the park finish just looks more classic on a basic 1911.

At the various shops I managed to check out a few different models and here's what I found.

Colt 1991 - Fairly loose fit and loose barrel lockup. Both front and rear of barrel had quite a bit of play when in battery. Some models were a little better, but none were very consistent. Triggers were all somewhat creepy but not terrible. Thumb safety on one would barely engage. Finish was very nice, but the price was very high on all of them. The quality did not match the price in my eyes.

Remington R1 - Somewhat loose slide fit and decent barrel lockup. I handled a number of these, including 2 of the beautiful stainless version and they all varied in fit and finish. None of them were very tight and the triggers all had a fair amount of creep.

Rock Island GI - Surprisingly good fit and finish but they varied in trigger pull. Some were good while others were very rough and creepy. Great bang for the buck and probably my second choice for a GI style 1911.

Springfield 1911 - Handled a number of Loaded, Range Officer, and Mil Spec models. They all had a consistently good fit and finish. Triggers on all of them were crisp and clean. I handled about 10 different Springers total and they all were fantastic. Nearly all of them were NM serial US assembled guns with no Brazil marks. I'm definitely going with a Springfield.

Auto Ordinance GI - Great classic look, but it just didn't stack up to the other brands. Probably the loosest 1911 I handled. Trigger was decent, but barrel lockup was far from tight. I wouldn't expect very good accuracy at all.

Para Ordinance GI Expert - Pretty good fit and finish on the couple I handled. Good sights, but somewhat creepy trigger. I did not like the ugly hammer and very loose and wimpy feeling scalloped grip safety.

Kimber Custom II - Decent fit, tight barrel lockup, clean finish, and a nice crisp trigger. Decent value for a more modded style 1911. Kimber only gives 1 mag with their guns, which seems kinda cheap on their part.

None of the shops I went to had a Ruger SR1911, but nearly all of the guys I talked to said they were very nice guns for the money.

Now I just have to hunt down a NM serial parkerized mil spec. Thanks everyone for your suggestions and input.

Infallible
07-21-2012, 21:08
I made the rounds today in Austin and hit all the local gun shops.

Springfield 1911 - Handled a number of Loaded, Range Officer, and Mil Spec models. They all had a consistently good fit and finish. Triggers on all of them were crisp and clean. I handled about 10 different Springers total and they all were fantastic. Nearly all of them were NM serial US assembled guns with no Brazil marks. I'm definitely going with a Springfield.


Psst they're still Brazilian made. Springfield stopped putting the markings on them around 3 years back because people didn't want to knowingly buy a made in Brazil 1911. The only ones not made in Brazil are the TRP and Pro models.

mr_fender
07-21-2012, 23:07
Actually I believe the ATF requires the place of origin to be marked on the frame. If more than 50% of the work is done in Brazil I believe it has to be by law marked Brazil. All Springfield 1911s start from Brazil forgings, even the custom shop guns. The ones completed here (more than 50%) are marked accordingly. As long as it is fit well I don't care either way.

Cool Hand Hodge
07-28-2012, 21:33
Dare i say the Auto Ordinance 1911pkz. Looks vintage and shoots great!

mr_fender
08-27-2012, 11:35
Thought I'd give an update on my 1911 search.

Well, the search is over. My LGS finally got a parkerized Springfield Mil-Spec and it came home with me this weekend. It is fantastic. Fit and finish are top notch. Lockup and bushing fit are very tight and there's no noticeable slide to frame play at all. It cycles very smoothly and has a nice, crisp trigger. I'd guess about 4 lbs since I don't have a pull gauge. I scooped it up for just over $650 with tax and everything out the door. I didn't get a chance to shoot it yet, but that will change in a day or so. It cycles snap caps very smoothly and even has pretty good extractor tension out of the box. I'm very impressed with Springfield's work on this beauty. I'll try to get some pics posted when I get home, but it's dead stock and will stay that way for a while. Now I just need to get a nice holster for it and a case or two of ammo! :thumbsup:

Brian Brazier
08-28-2012, 23:23
These are two of the nicest examples of a 1911. The roll marks mimic the early Colts.

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/006-2.jpg

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/004-4.jpg

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m8/jamesrea_2006/jamesrea2011A/005-2.jpg

The blued model is absolutely astounding. The bluing is beautiful.

These are Cimarron Arms 1911s made in the Phillipines. IIRC, they are made by RIA. Brian, correct me if I am wrong. It is hard to keep them straight.

Damn now I need a Cimarron Blued 1911, I just picked up 3 Cimarron Model P's

countrygun
08-28-2012, 23:28
Psst they're still Brazilian made. Springfield stopped putting the markings on them around 3 years back because people didn't want to knowingly buy a made in Brazil 1911. The only ones not made in Brazil are the TRP and Pro models.

The Trophy Match frames come in as rough forgings and are finished in the US as well.

Foxtrotx1
08-28-2012, 23:38
anything wrong with the RIA pistols?

Brian Brazier
08-28-2012, 23:45
I would go with the Springfield GI or depending on your budget the Cimarron, personally I could care less about the Springfield being built in Brazil, mine have been perfect. Rock Island makes a good 1911 but they have a fps, and flared ejection ports, those things kill it for me, when it comes to a Mil Spec 1911.

Or you could always save up for a Pony (this has a fps but its all I could find when I went looking for a 100th Anniversary)
http://i158.photobucket.com/albums/t97/bbrazierkendo/DSCN0069.jpg
http://i158.photobucket.com/albums/t97/bbrazierkendo/DSCN0068.jpg