Most Enhancements Found On Custom Built 1911 .45 ACP's?


Ala Dan
September 22, 2004, 01:47 AM
Greting's All-

My question is this, which of the following firearms do you feel
offer all the enhancements (bells and whistles, if you will) of
a custom 1911 style .45 auto. Please see the attached poll
and vote for your favorite. Please exclude all custom built
1911 .45 ACP's.

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

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Dave Sample
September 22, 2004, 02:00 AM
Ok for you! I am out of the game! The Grim Creeper came in and it was over before it began! Nice Poll, though!

September 22, 2004, 02:15 AM
The Holy Gospel of John (Moses Browning)

As translated from the original ancient manuscripts by Fr. Frog.
© copyright 2002 by John C. Schaefer

1 In the beginning was the 1911, and the 1911 was THE pistol, and it was good. And behold the Lord said, thou shalt not muck with my disciple John's design for it is good and it workith. For John made the 1911, and lo all of his weapons, from the designs which I, the Lord, gave him upon the mountain.

2 And shouldst thou muck with it and hang all manner of foul implements upon it, and profane its internal parts, thou shalt surely have malfunctions, and in the midst of battle thou shalt surely come to harm.

3 And as the ages passed men in their ignorance and arrogance didst forget the word of the Lord and began to profane the 1911. The tribe of the gamesman did place recoil spring guides and extended slide releases upon the 1911 and their metal smiths didst tighten the tolerances and alter parts to their liking, their clearness of mind being clouded by lust.

4 Their artisans did hang all manner of foul implements upon the 1911 and did so alter it that it became impractical to purchase. For lo, the artisans didst charge a great tax upon the purchasers of the 1911 so that the lowly field worker could not afford one. And the profaning of the internal parts didst render it unworkable when the dust of the land fell upon it.

5 And lo, they didst install adjustable sights, which are an abomination unto the Lord. For they doth break and loose their zero when thou dost need true aim. And those who have done so will be slain in great numbers by their enemies in the great battle. a

6 And it came to pass that the Lord didst see the abomination wrought by man and didst cause, as he had warned, fearful malfunctions to come upon the abominations and upon the artisans who thought they could do no wrong.

7 Seeing the malfunctions and the confusion of men the lord of the underworld did see an opportunity to further ensnare man and didst bring forth pistols made of plastic, whose form was such that they looked and felt like a brick, yet the eyes of man being clouded, they were consumed by the plastic pistol and did buy vast quantities of them.

8 And being a deceitful spirit the lord of the underworld did make these plastic pistols unamenable to the artisans of earth and they were unable to muck much with the design, and lo these pistols did function.

9 And the evil one also brought forth pistols in which the trigger didst both cock and fire them and which require a "dingus" to make them appear safe.

10 But man being stupid did not understand these new pistols and did proceed to shoot themselves with the plastic pistol, and with the trigger cocking pistols for lo their manual of arms required great intelligence which man had long since forsaken. Yet man continue to gloat over these new pistols blaming evil forces for the negligent discharges which they themselves had committed.

11 And when man had been totally ensnared with the plastic pistol, the lord of the underworld didst cause a plague of the terrible Ka-Boom to descend upon man and the plastic pistols delivered their retribution upon men. And there was a great wailing and gnashing of teeth in the land.

12 Then seeing that the eyes of man were slowly being opened and that man was truly sorrowful for his sinful misdeeds, the Lord did send his messengers in the form of artisans who did hear and obey the teachings of the prophet and who didst restore the profaned 1911s to their proper configuration, and lo, to the amazement of men they didst begin to work as the prophet had intended.

13 And the men of the land didst drive out the charlatans and profaners from the land, and there was joy and peace in the land, except for the evil sprits which tried occasionally to prey on the men and women of the land and who were sent to the place of eternal damnation b by the followers of John.

Black Majik
September 22, 2004, 04:11 AM
*Ahem* the Colt NRM is based off of the 1991A1 :D

Honestly, the gun that I've found to have the "best" bells and whistles come from the Kimber Line.

Their magwells (such as the tactical series) are the only ones that are flush to the grip. Springfield Armory has a bad habit of just slapping on a magwell to their 1911's. Quite ugly.

Most or all the kimbers I've seen have at least an extended thumb safety, beavertail, and some cool lookin' sights. Some come with ext. magwells also.

September 22, 2004, 04:50 AM
Your poll is a little off in choices. You are asking about custom features, but then list standard Colts as choices. They do not have the "enhanced" features of the Kimbers and Springfield Loaded models. But don't get me wrong. My choice out of that list would still be the Colt.

September 22, 2004, 07:44 AM
Dear Ala Dan:

I agree with Black Majik about the Kimber.. I think, the Kimbers are probably the most consistently accurate 1911 factory pistols of those listed. Just recently, I read an extensive review about three Kimber pistols: Custom Target II, Kimber Ultra II and Pro TLE.

The Kimber Custom Target II averaged a 10-round group size of 55,1 mm (= 2.17 inch) @ 25 meters from Ransom rest with all 20 different loads used (4 factory loads: IMI, PMC, CBC/MagTech and 16 handloads: seven w/185 grs. bullets, five w/200 grs. bullets and four w/230 grs. bullets. The best 10-shot group has been 30 mm (= 1.18 inch), the "worst" was 91 mm (= 3.58 inch).

For the record, average 5-shot groups @ 25 meters (Ransom-rested) produced by Kimbers Ultra II (3.5" bbl.) and Pro TLE / RL II (4") have been 82,2 mm (= 3.24 in.) and 52,9 mm (= 2.08 in.). 10 different loads were used: 8 factory loads and two handloads. Best 5-shot group of Ultra II has been 43 mm (= 1.69 in.), worst 154 mm (= 6.06 in.) using PMC JHP FP 185 grs. Best 5-shot group of Pro TLE / RL II was 24 mm (0.94 in), the worst group was 186 mm (= 7.32 in), produced by a strange Fiocchi load 105 grs Frangible RN .451".

September 22, 2004, 08:25 AM
I would get the Colt, ole buddy. But then, you knew that! :D

silent one
September 22, 2004, 08:35 AM
Say Dan,

I would have to say Kimber. They have the all the goodies without looking gaudy, IMHO. Some pistols look as though the enhancements were added on as a second thought. Kimbers seem to be designed with them in mind.

good luck, and be safe.


Ala Dan
September 22, 2004, 11:18 AM
OK, OK, Guys-

Slack up a bit, I had too fill the gap in the poll in order to reach a
total of eight choices; thus why the Rock Island and Colt's are in
the poll in the first place.

FootNote: I must admit, the Kimber Custom Target II is a mighty
fine looking weapon; but as for the others, well lets just say that
I've read (or heard) lots of horror stories by owners about their
particular Kimbers.

Many thanks to all who have replied so far, as there is some very
interesting thoughts and opinions.

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

silent one
September 22, 2004, 11:29 AM
Dan, my friend,

Say it ain't so. Horror stories bout Kimbers' ? :what: :confused: The guys who complain bout them must be drinkin "toe nail tea":D

good luck, and be safe.


September 22, 2004, 12:21 PM
You said Springer Loaded but did not limit the Kimber... Plus there are different generations of Kimbers. Gun for gun I would take Springfield Loaded over Kimber Custom II any day of the week and twice on Sundays.

September 22, 2004, 02:25 PM
The good news, IMHO, is all the guns listed except the Colt and RIA come with the "basics" of what most custom guns offer as "features".

Most 1911's have them as standard now which is good.

If I was choosing, and I'm biased :D , I would purchase either the Kimber Anniversary model with the internal extractor and no series II safety, or the Springfield Loaded. The Springfield is probably a better value given the cost of the Anniversary model.

I'd wait a while for external extractor models to see how they work out in the long term. Not that I have anything against externals, it's just my lack of faith in the companies to test and produce them properly in their 1911's...time will tell. Same goes for Para's interesting extractor.

September 22, 2004, 02:50 PM
I'd wait a while for external extractor models to see how they work out in the long term.

Dear 45auto:

Good idea indeed. I am glad that you want to make sure that a new feature that's different from the original gun design actually works as intended.

Personally, I don't like the external extractor on an 1911, but I hope, it'll work as advertised. Hopefully, time will tell us soon, so that you can make a sound choice of specific gun model.

Dear Dan:

I've read and heard about those "Kimber horror stories", too. When voting for Kimber I thought about sound, well-made, representative examples of their 1911 pistols. There are many of them out there. Every large-scale gun manufacturer lets out a lemon every once in a while.

Thanks for allowing me to share my opinion.

September 22, 2004, 03:10 PM
Hey Silent one you have to dump your Kimbers for a GSR.:D

Ala Dan
September 22, 2004, 03:59 PM
Att: TK 73

Many thanks for the observations, thoughts, opinions, and
comments. As always they are certainly welcomed. No pun
intended to the Kimber folk's; but I was trying to draw a
little knowledge on the Para 1911 SSP.

I'm a SIG person by a very wide margin; but I like the looks,
feel, fit and finish found on the Para 1911 SSP. I don't care
anything about Para's LDA weapons; as I feel there are
better choices out there!

I'm hip to the Springfield Armory (bi-tone) Lightweight Loaded
as well. But in my neck to the woods, those things are about
$100 bucks more than the Para. If anyone has shoot a Para
1911 SSP, please give us a range report. 'Til then, I will be
trying to borrow one myself for testing purposes.

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

September 22, 2004, 10:28 PM
Kinda strange question though... 'Most custom features'? Not to get hung up on semantics, but custom features by definition aren't standard.

My idea of a custom 1911 would be a basic NRM 1991A1 with a short STI trigger, 4# trigger job, a bobbed standard or commander type hammer, no MIM anywhere, good quality sear, disconnect, my trusty GI slide stop and thumb safety, a standard rear Novak sight and an XS Big Dot front night sight. I like blued metal though ideally it would probably be hard chromed or boron carbided. I've made my personal NRM as close to this as is easily affordable to me at the time.

I don't care too much for ambi safeties or super duper deluxe deep dish grip safeties. Don't need a huge magwell. Don't want or need a light rail.

September 24, 2004, 02:53 PM
This may not be exactly in the spirit of your thread, but I think it fits in there somewhere...

What has unfortunately become a 'custom' add-on feature that I'd like to see in any factory product is reliability and longevity of its component parts. That also includes the factory magazines.


P.S...The availability of sights that are user friendly for aging eyes would help also.


Dave Sample
September 24, 2004, 10:08 PM
None of the above are Custom Guns. There are Customized Factory Guns, there are Custom Guns, and there are Factory Guns with some features pistolsmiths do to Customized Factory Guns. Factory Guns are just that, and no more or no less than another production gun that is made on Monday Morning or Friday Afternoon. A Wednesday about noon build would be the one I would want.

September 25, 2004, 01:21 AM
I'll stick to buying a Colt and having my gunsmith make whatever modifications are necessary or desired. That is what I did with my Colt Combat Commander and I couldn't be happier!

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