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Thread: Best 1911...

  1. #1
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    Calling all 1911 owners, users, and gunshop guru's!

    I'm in the planning stages of another pistol purchase!! For those who paid attention I had bought a Taurus m35 .38 spec snubby but my significant other decided she liked it much more than I could ever and since laid claim. This leaves me with only 1 option...

    Buy another gun!:celebrate

    But I want another 1911 (I think I'm addicted.) I have a few I'm interested in but for this question I want to leave no stone unturned. With that being said, who do you feel makes the best 1911 pistol for $800?

    I can read and have ingested many, many reviews but real world experience is priceless. So for all those gunshop owners and 1911 lovers I want your opinions!



  2. #2
    Regular Member VAopencarry's Avatar
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    Currently the best value 1911 is the Taurus. Some Kimber models can be had for 800 or less.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

  3. #3
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    VAopencarry wrote:
    Currently the best value 1911 is the Taurus. Some Kimber models can be had for 800 or less.
    I have virtually the same question as the OP. The Taurus DOES have more bells and whistles for the money, BUT where does it rank in reliability and accuracy? I also find the Taurus to be rather ugly, especially with all of those words on the slide.

    If you had a Taurus and a Kimber with the same features, at the same price, which would you buy? I'm guessing anyone in that case would say the Kimber. But what if you have a Taurus PT1911 with all its bells and whistles, next to a standard Kimber Custom II with no frills, at the same price? Is the Kimber that much more accurate and reliable to be worth it?

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    I know the Taurus guns are a great value, especially their 1911's, and I've heard plenty of good things about them. But, TO ME, carrying a John Browning-designed 1911 model that was built by a company out of Brazil, is like driving a Corvette that was assembled in Zimbabawe. Just doesn't seem right. 1911's like to have some rounds put through them before they're totally reliable, so looking for a nice, used version that someone else has already paid the $$$ for the break-in ammo is always a nice option. I've seen very nice used Kimber Pro Carrys and Springfield "Loaded" models in the $500+/- range. Just make sure the gunsmith behind the counter is a 1911 guy, and have him tell you that he's gone through it and it is in great working condition. Nothing worse than getting someone else's botched project when you were expecting a reliable gun.

  5. #5
    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    I'd personally look for aColt, Dan Wesson, Sig, SW, Springfield,Para Ordnance, Taurusand Kimber in that order if the caliber was to be 45acp.
    If you're considering a 10mm go with Dan Wesson.
    Para Ordnance makes the Tac Nine, I believe it is a 18rd 9mm.
    Springfield makes the EMP an extremely concealable gun.

    Since I'm a 10mm guy get the DW Pointman.
    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
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    I'm surprised that Kimber is at the end of your list. Why is that?

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    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    Had several bad experiences with the last two brands, lost my confidence in them.
    Wasn't the Taurus 1911 model.

    Edit:
    Also forgot about Rock River Arms, put it before the Taurus on my list.
    Sig Sauer's P220 SAOis really nicealthough not a 1911.
    If Sig would just makethe P220 SAOin 10mm.
    NO custom makers listed because getting one of those around $800, isn't likely.:X

    EDIT #II:
    or you could get a Detonics.
    http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...?Item=93865301
    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
    The easiest ex. but probably the most difficult to grasp for gun owners is that fool permission slip so many of you have, especially if you show it off with pride. You should recognize it as an embarrassment, an infringement, a travesty and an affront to a free person.


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    I also agree with this opinion. Taurus and Kimber would be my # 1 choice.

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    I almost gave up on this thread...

    Sadly I have a PT1911 and this is what I have to say about it.

    Although for the price it can't be beat there are some things about it that have been aturn off.

    The finish is sub-par, after only a year you would think that I carried this thing through Nam. No I take that back my dad's colt looked way better than this and yes his did go through Nam. Now I realize that Kydex and injected molded plastic are not the best on finish's but I still am less than amused.

    Secondly there is a constantfeed issue. No problem at all with hardball ammo but if I don't let the slide slam home on the Hp'sthe round will nose dive and jam. I would not call this a complete failure because as I said you just have to letthe spring do its job and this has never happened while firing. Only after I clean it and try to reload for defensive purposes. I have fired 100 Hp's through it while training and never one problem. And I have about 600 rounds of hard ball ammo without an issue.

    On the bright side,it is very accurate. I can average about four inches at 25 yardson a rest and I'm sure in the hands of a more capable shooter it would do better. I have never had a misfeed or ff. It has been 100% reliable while actually shooting.

    As a first gun I would recomend it completely. But I am ready to move on to bigger and better things. I have looked at the Kimber Eclipse, Colt 80, and Springfield loaded. I can't say which one I like best. But I appriciate all of the help and comments.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    I’m pretty impressed with the Sig GSR so far. It’s tight, but after running 200 rounds of ball through it to break it in, it’s been 100% reliable with everything. I keep it loaded with 230 gr Federal HSTs. Sig had the foresight to build it as a shooter, not a safe queen. It has a great indexing beavertail grip safety and nice checkering on the front and back. They passed on the full length guide rod, ambi safety,and the forward slide serrations, none of which are necessary. The Novak night sights are easy to find in the dark, the trigger light and crisp, and the look always gets compliments.


    One of the things that sold me on the Sig was that they do not use any MIM parts.




  11. #11
    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    That GSR is nice. As soon as I fill my "must have" basic inventory, it is one of three vieing for "next".
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Check out STI, theymake some great performers at a good price point. Rock Islan Armory is another company that does the same.

    Springfield Armory also has some of it's 1911s built out of Brazil and they have a great reputation as a company. I like the SA line myself, so IMO I wouldn't be turned off by a company that outsources it's components.

  13. #13
    Regular Member Flintlock's Avatar
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    Agent19 wrote:
    I'd personally look for aColt, Dan Wesson, Sig, SW, Springfield,Para Ordnance, Taurusand Kimber in that order if the caliber was to be 45acp.
    If you're considering a 10mm go with Dan Wesson.
    Para Ordnance makes the Tac Nine, I believe it is a 18rd 9mm.
    Springfield makes the EMP an extremely concealable gun.

    Since I'm a 10mm guy get the DW Pointman.
    I like your list but you didn't mention Wilson and most of the manufacturersyou mentioned are going to be more than $800 for a 1911... Why not Wilson? I find them to be absolutely top-of-the-line.
    Peace through superior firepower

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  14. #14
    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    You must have skipped my second post.
    I consider Wilson a Custom shop/manufacturer
    Agent19 wrote:
    NO custom makers listed because getting one of those around $800, isn't likely.:X
    Haven't researched Wilson's prices lately.

    I can get a 1911 from all other the manufacturesI listed for around $800, some will be new others may not be.
    Buy used not abused.

    I have friends with FFL's.:P
    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
    The easiest ex. but probably the most difficult to grasp for gun owners is that fool permission slip so many of you have, especially if you show it off with pride. You should recognize it as an embarrassment, an infringement, a travesty and an affront to a free person.


    ~Alan Korwin

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    Hard to go wrong with anything from SA, Colt, S&W, or Dan Wesson. Kimber is also ok although they seem to catch a bad rep on the net.

    If you have the money, don't overlook spending a bit more and getting something like the SA TRP. The Taurus PT1911 is a decent gun if you can find one for $500-$600. I wouldnt pay over that for one as they are not worth itin IMO.

    If I was going to buy a sub $800 1911, I personally would go with a Colt series 80 or a SA Mil-Spec. I've found all the bells and whistles to be over rated and the fitting of them to be poor on lower end guns.



    Just my 2 cents



  16. #16
    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    I have not had personal experience with Kimbers but I have two friends who have them. My impression is that they are so tight that many (most?) are going to require some adjustment after break in. Both of my friends had to send them back to the factory after break in for some polishing and adjustment due primarly to FTEs. However, since they got them back they are rock solid with zero more FTF/FTE in several thousand rounds. YMMV

    Edit: I had Wilson on the brain when I meant to type Kimber :?
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Mmm, I had to go budget model, and I picked up a Rock Island Armory 1911.

    I like it a lot, but the trigger's a bit rough on your finger.

    I might consider rubber-coating it or something.
    Why open carry? Because 1911 > 911.

  18. #18
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    I have a HIgh Standard, a Springfield SS Mil-Spec, anda Les Baer TRS. They are placed in ascending order in price: 400+, 500+ and 1600+ respectively. And the differences are noticeable at each price. For my money, I'd go with the Springfield as it presents the best bang for your buck, plus it is made with quality steel that will tolerate the inevitable upgrades that are bestowed upon most production guns. You'll even have money left over for the upgrades that YOU want to add as you need them, not the ones that Taurus might think will help market their guns. At 800, you could also look into a Colt.

  19. #19
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    Thank you all for your thoughts.

    I do believe for now I have ruled out Kimber, not because of heresey or reviews. But I got to hold one at Cabelas and was not impressed.

    Today being 3/5/08 I went to anew gunshop called Handgunners in Topton. I have heard nothing but good about thisshop. I had a very legnthy conversation about all kinds of 1911's. We talked about all of the different and latest features available, the ones you may want and the ones you need. He talked about all of the 1911's he had sold and the ones that came back repeatedly.I asked him specifically about Kimbers since I had handled one just recently and he told me the issue is with the smiths. Kimber seems to hold onto employees for a couple months or so. And then when the new batch comes in the old leave. And so the quality on them seems to fluctuate because of the changes in the smiths. I don't know this to be 100% correct but at least it was an answeras is to why some swear by them and others don't.

    SoI asked him his opinion on who made the best 1911 for around $800 his answer without even a pause was Smith&Wesson.He asked me to wait a moment and put four 1911's on the table.

    S&W 1911, Springfield Mil-Spec, and a Colt 1991 Series. I looked over each one so Icould gather a few questions and the debate began.

    TheColt I noticed right away did not have the same fit and finsish as the rest. The slide to frame fit was loose and the parts inside seemed to have some play. I noticed that atcertain point the slide stuck as if it was gummed up from something. Aside from that it wasvery well balancedand it seemed like the machining was top notch all smooth edges and no discolorating marks.

    The Springfield was notably wider. This stuck out a little bit to me because I thought all 1911's had the same width. The Springfield was very smooth however it lacked the parts I wanted. The slide was tight and the finish was very nice. But I noticed the slide was lighter, and the internal parts had some discoloration. A very well made gun and in my opinion much nicer than the Colt.

    Finally he handed me the S&W. The slide to frame fit was the tightest of the three, four if you count my Taurus. The stainless was polished almost to a slippery feel. The internal parts had a heft I didn't feel in the others. The barrel and bushing fit was astonishing. The FLGR had a hex head so that you could remove it without a bushing wrench. I'll admit that I can remove the spring without the wrench on my Taurus and it seemed odd to replace one tool for another. The low mount adjustable sights were very nice. My concern was that they would move while brushing up against my cover garment or during use. I can't say it was put rest but he smacked the sight against the counter and I couldn't tell that the moved at all. My other concern was the external extractor. I don't think S&W has had any issue with them but Browning did not feel they were nesassary and I really don't know how I feel either way. The most notable feature was the completely flaired and angled chamber. The pistol was designed to except wad cutters, and I am rather sure this pistol would have no problem accepting just about any ammo I would feed it.

    They all seemed like excellent examples of 1911's. I am very surprised that at the moment I was very impressed with the Smith. I don't know that I am going to make a decision at the moment. I never expected to like the Smith's and so now I need to do some reading and backround. But I will continue to update and share what I learn as well as consider all of the opinions above.

    All and all it was a great experience, I'm not used to this kind of service at a gunshop. Most of them seem aprehensive, and pushy with certain items. The gentlemen who helped me just seemed to enjoy what he was doing.





  20. #20
    Regular Member P2's Avatar
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    If you are in the market for a 1911 this would be my recommendation. I use it as my CCW weapon. If you have a good belt and holster it makes carrying that hunk of iron better.



  21. #21
    Founder's Club Member ixtow's Avatar
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    I had never owned a 1911 until recently. I was sold on the Taurus PT-1911-AR. I love it. I've seen and fired plenty of friends' 1911s, most of which cost more, and were not as nice as this Taurus.

    I was not an easy sell either. I hated the triggers on the Taurus Revolvers I had shot. I was very skeptical. But after playing with a co-workers' PT-1911, I couldn't find better for the money.

    I also read a fair amount of "The Taurus PT-1911 is the sux" on-line. Can't say I know why. I'm glad I passed over the Springfield for it.

    The advertising for the gun is a little over the top, but it IS a sweet weapon for the price. It's my new favorite.

    While I'm no proponent of "gun locks,' the one built into the hammer of the PT-1911 is just such a cool invention I decided to like it. :-P I have a slight problem with a Juvenile Delinquent in the house, and conventional key-locks mean nothing to this person. But that's another story... Suffice it to say that this one foils the bugger where others have failed.

    Prior to this, the closest to a 1911 I have owned is my stainless Llama MicroMax in .380. Basically a shrunken 1911. Still have it.
    "The fourth man's dark, accusing song had scratched our comfort hard and long..."
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  22. #22
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    I have the Taurus PT1911B. I've put a couple hunnerd round thru her so far and have had no issues so far. I paid under $600 OTD and have been very pleased with it. The lettering is a bit large but is not as bright as the advertisememt pictures show, they are a bit subdued in reality.
    The fit and finish is excellent and is comparable if not slightly better than a Kimber Custom II. Taurus hand fits and tunes each pistol at the factory and the sights are damn near dead on out of the box. After a 100 round break in, I was getting sick groups at 30 feet and was getting tighter when I ran out of ammo. Recoil is smooth and fun! I love the thud a .45 gives.
    I found it actually slightly lighter than the PT99AF when both are fully loaded and not to mention slimmer.
    Taurus also has a lifetime warantee which is a big deal in my book.
    As far as the finish wear, yeah, it does occur, but the sidearm is a tool, not a diamond encrusted Rolex. I could care less about finish wear as long as it remains functional and does what it is designed to do.
    The steel is Brazilian which can be translated to German steel since they are using German steel manufacturing techniques.
    My gripe is with the grips. The earlier models had firm rubber checkered grips, but the new ones are hard plastic. I'll be swapping those out when funds allow. Don't get me wrong, it fits my hand great and doesn't feel like I'm holding a wet bar of soap, but I'm looking for a little more grippier (if thats a word).




  23. #23
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    Just an update for those of you who were following this topic.

    I have placed a 1911 on layaway at Handgunners of Topton. The gentlemen was so very nice that I decided he will be my new go to guy for guns. I may not be able to drop thousands every month but I still want to be treated as such. And my last gunshop didn't offer me that.

    At this time however I am not going to disclose my purchase because... I am afraid you will make fun of me.

    No really, I can hear the name calling already. So I am going to wait until I bring her home, then I will post pictures and disclose and just except the name calling.

    I will however encourage everyone who is looking for a new 1911 to look at the S&W's. They start at $750 and go up but all are well worth the money and in my opinion maybe the best 1911 in the range.

  24. #24
    Campaign Veteran kimbercarrier's Avatar
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    I used to own a Para Ordanance P12-45. It was great but I got tire of dealing with the double stack grip. The gun shot great though. I now own a Kimber Ultra Carry II it has a 7 round mag and a 3 inch barrel. Once I broke it in as they recommend it has worke reliably and acurate.

    I love mine and would not trade it for anything.

  25. #25
    Founder's Club Member ixtow's Avatar
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    WhiteFeather wrote:
    No really, I can hear the name calling already. So I am going to wait until I bring her home, then I will post pictures and disclose and just except the name calling.
    Rock Island? [giggles]

    Not the cleanest or prettiest, but a functional, cheap gun. But for a whole $100 more I get a PT-1911.... Whole different category of toy, er, gun... Kind of a no-brainer for me. It seems like I got a Kimber for half price.

    Just suggesting to anyone else who may be contemplating the same thing, the Rock Island isn't so bad. "The cheapest" often means you assume it's lousy. Not the case. It lacks in looks, fit, and finish. But if you just want an affordable 1911 weapon that works, The Phillipines delivered just enough to be that.

    I'm thinking of getting one as a 'convert to 10mm' project, just to have the only 10mm 1911 that costs (a LOT) less than $1000. :-P
    "The fourth man's dark, accusing song had scratched our comfort hard and long..."
    http://edhelper.com/poetry/The_Hangm...rice_Ogden.htm

    https://gunthreadadapters.com

    "Be not intimidated ... nor suffer yourselves to be wheedled out of your Liberties by any pretense of Politeness, Delicacy, or Decency. These, as they are often used, are but three different names for Hypocrisy, Chicanery, and Cowardice." - John Adams

    Tyranny with Manners is still Tyranny.

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