In Nov. 2011 I found a nice clean used Rock Island Armory .45ACP pistol at the local gun shop. It was priced at $275 OTD. I got it home, cleaned it up and headed for the range. It shot beautifully feeding Winchester .45 ACP 230 gr. FMJ’s like candy. It would not however fire Winchester .45 230 gr. JHP’s. Also the tang on the grip safety badly cut my hand. This was largely due to the consequences of my having been burned in a gas fire in 1998. The skin is just very thin. I tried taping it up, etc. Which helped.
One day I posted a question asking what drop-in grip safety would be good to use on my 1911. I was contacted by TTM65 who offered to send me a grip safety. After a few private messages, he graciously suggested that if I would send him the pistol, he’d go over it and see what could be done to make it more suitable to my needs. So... in December it was shipped. When asked if there was anything in particular I’d like to have them do, I asked that they try to make it to where my hand would not be cut when firing standard loads. I wanted to be able to fire more than just one box of ammo before I had to put it up for the day. I also asked if maybe the rear sight could be filed open a bit to make the front sight easier to see. Ted said they’d see what they could do. Cool.
The RIA 1911 was shipped back just the other day. To say it had been improved would be very much an understatement. Ted and one of the men in his shop, C.J., did a absolutely fabulous job on the pistol. What I sent to them was sort of like a sows ear. What they returned to me is the proverbial silk purse. It is outstanding. Here is a list of what was done to the gun...
Here is a list of what was done to the gun:
Tightened the slide to frame fit and lockup.
Relieved the area underneath the trigger guard to allow easier grip.
Fitted a nice match type trigger adjustable for over-travel.
Did a trigger job to produce a clean crisp trigger pull.
Replaced the front barrel bushing for a tighter fit.
Hand checkered the front of the grip for better control.
Sanded the wood grips to remove the dents and dings and applied 8 hand rubbed coats of Tung Oil.
Removed the Spur on the hammer.
Removed the Spur on the grip safety.
Replaced the old style government fixed sights with adjustable target sights.
Shaped and polished the frame ramp and barrel for cleaner feeding.Shaped and adjusted the extractor for cleaner feeding.
Replaced the straight main spring housing with one that has a radius.
Refinished the gun with CeraKote creamic based gun coating system.
Return shipping and handling/insurance.
Here is a link to pictures of the pistol. I regret that I did not take pictures before sending the pistol off to Ted. The pictures I hope show to some degree just what wonderful work was done by Ted and C.J. Last Thursday, this past Monday and today I went to the range and shot the RIA 1911 using 200 rounds of WWB 230 gr. FMJ’s and then first 300 and today 200 rounds of Tula 230 gr. FMJ’s. From the first round the pistol has worked perfectly. Functionally it feeds, fires and ejects perfectly. POA is exactly POI at 15 yds. The trigger breaks clean and crisp.
It is a very easy pistol to shoot.
Perhaps the most remarkable thing is that Ted sent no bill... not even for the shipping and insurance. When I talked to C.J. by phone he said there was no charge. I have tried to express to Ted and C.J. how very much I appreciate what they have done for me. I have looked at pictures of nice 1911's that have been customized, etc. But I never imagined I would have the pleasure of owning and enjoying shooting such a pistol. I want to express publicly my most unreserved thanks to Ted and C.J. for the great kindness they have done in working on my RIA 1911. It is a gorgeous pistol. It is very accurate as can be seen from the pictures. One of the fellows at the range today, who has far more experience that I do shooting 1911's, shot my RIA at some targets at 25 yds. He was able to keep all the rounds from several magazines in the head of a silhouette. Hopefully with practice I will do as well.
Here is a link to pictures of the RIA 1911 as well as the last target fired which was 50 rounds beginning at 7yd. and working out to 25 yds. Click on the bar to access the photos.