Armscor 1911-A2 Widebody 9mm


May 18, 2005, 08:36 PM
This is a fairly long tale but with a very happy ending! I've been looking for a 1911 in 9mm for a long time, but I'm not willing to spend $650+ for the Kimber and Springfield offerings since my only purpose is to be able to shoot cheap ammo (~$80/1000 for Wolf & $3.86/50 for CCI Aluminum Blazer). I've been making do in the mean time with my Star BM, nice little gun but not quite a 1911.

A while back I ran into the Armscor rep over on and a discussion came up where Armscor would be comming out with a 9mm "soon" So I enquired further via PM and learned he had two guns but no mags and they were widebody and used Para P18 mags.

Somebody beat me to the first one, but he offered a very good price on the second that had some "touchy feely wear from the shot show" but was otherwise new. An exchage of CC & FFL info had the gun in my hand a few days after the P18 mag from Natchez arrived (all I could find in stock the was nickel plated $5 extra, no biggie I thought at the time).

Couldn't wait to get to the range but a weekend of bad weather made me.
While waiting I noticed the mag wouldn't drop free and would lock the slide back with one round in the mag when feeding snap caps. So on a rainy afternoon I filed the mag follower shelf so it didn't hit the slide stop with one round in the mag but still locked the slide back when empty. I knocked off a few high spots in the mag well and smoothed some rough spots on the mag and really noticed how good the trigger was while dry-firing.

Finally got to it, and shot a box of Wolf and box of CCI Blazer. Accuracy was good, perfect function but the trigger wasn't always resetting. Next tried a box of 145 gr Silver Bear JHP to see if it'd feed heavy JHP. Also perfect until the durn external extractor broke on shot 138! :fire:

A quick call to Armscor in Pahrump, NV had a replacement extractor in my hand three days latter. That's when I got really bummed - it was the wrong extractor!

While waiting on the mail I detail stripped the gun figuring I'd look into the trigger reset problem, seemed to get better with shooting so I figured it was probably just some crud inside. I was wrong, the bow was dragging on the P18 mag that's why it didn't drop free. It reset for dry fire because the mag was empty, fully loaded the mag "swelled" enough to prevent trigger reset and that's why it seemed to get better with shooting as I wasn't always loading the full 18 since I'd forgotten my mag loading tool first time out. Easy enough to fix.

I Emailed a photo of what extractor I had and what they sent and recieved a reply to return the gun since the extractor on my sample gun was not what was put into production. So a trip to FedEx and more dissapointment ensues for 16 days. Then I get the gun back along with a blue 17-rnd "LEO" Mec-Gar mag, and a few Armscor promo items for my trouble. Extractor is very different -- would seem to have been a wise production mod given my initial experience so I've now got a new slide to go along with it.

From this point on couldn't be happier Shot 200 Blazer and 200 Wolf first time out with a single failure to extract with Wolf on shot 198 I believe.

Next time out got it up around 900 rounds with no more problems. Third time out Iwas shoting only wolf and had two more extraction/ejection failures, figured it was time to clean it.

Now I've got 2000 rounds thru it since its return, 1050 of Wolf with 4 failure to extract/eject and 950 with CCI aluminum Blazer with 1 failure to eject (classic stovepipe) and one failure to fire -- round had solid primer dent and did fire second time thru when I tried out of curosity..

The 17-rnd Mec-Gar mag functions perfectly. I got a second nickel PO 18-rounder and it was worse than the first being ~0.008 longer from to back so it wouldn't drop free until I'd filed off most of the plating. No more Para nickel plated mags for this gun. I want more 18-rounders cause we have 6 plates in our rack and 18 gives three quick rounds with my wife pulling the remote reset line -- very much fun. I'll futz with 'em to make it work, hopefully blue P18 mags will not be so tight.

Based on MSRP this gun should run about $450. Don't know what kind or how many mags will ship with the production guns.


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May 18, 2005, 10:34 PM
I am intrigued - I was going to build-up a single-stack 1911 in 9mm as an IDPA ESP gun-slash-"girlfriend gun," but at $450 MSRP/$350 street(?), this Armscorp gun might be the way to go. Please post links/pics, if you don't mind.

Also, it occurs to me that Pearce Grips or some other company may be offering extended floorplates for those MecGar mags that would bump you up to 18, or possibly 19, rounds per mag. Heck, you may even be able to get the same product from ParaOrdnance. To be on the safe side, I'd also look into getting some extra-power replacement magazine springs from Wolff, if you do wind up getting the +2 floorplates.

Boss Spearman
May 18, 2005, 10:59 PM
Just like Rock Island, I can not find Armscor weapons of any kind anywhere in Indianapolis.

May 18, 2005, 11:28 PM
I was guessing ~$450 "street" prices as I thought I saw $550 MSRP. Mec-Gar widebody mags run ~$25 Para about ~$45.

I keep wishing Armscor would make a version of their "enhanced 45" in 9mm. Right now getting the RIA .38 Super and fitting a 9mm barrel seems the cheapest way to go, but you don't get the ambi safety, Novaks style high profile sights, beavertail grip safety, and fancy hammer.


May 21, 2005, 01:02 AM
Wally, Armscor DOES make 9mm widebodies:

Armscor M1911-A2-9 FSB (Blued)
Armscor M1911-A2-9 FS2T (2-Tone)

Maybe they're just not importing 'em into the US,
but at a GunShow super-sale here, a year ago,
they were being flogged for about US$210 each,
only one mag included, and lousy black poly grips
instead of wood.


May 28, 2005, 08:51 PM
Mine is the widebody 9mm. Its what they are importing at present. Perhaps still a bit hard to find right now.

What'd I'like to see them import/make is a single stack 9mm with the "enhanced" sights and ambi safety.

I happen to like the black polymer grips. Grips is the best place to skimp because you will never make everybody happy anyway, and they are trivial to change.


May 29, 2005, 10:44 AM
I happen to like the black polymer grips. Grips is the best place to skimp because you will never make everybody happy anyway, and they are trivial to change.

Quite right, wally.
I regret my crass remark.

May 30, 2005, 01:42 PM
To follow up, tolerences on Para P18 mags (marked 2004) are really sloppy. I picked up a third Nickel plated P18 9mm mag (used) and a blue .38Super mag. This nickel mag fit and dropped free but again I had to file a bit on the follower shelf to not lock back with one shot remaining. The blue .38Super mag needed the same filing as the original Nickel ones did to drop free, but no follower work was required with this one. Before I started fitting them I measured spreads of 0.080 or more in many key diminesions

On the plus side, all four of the Para P18 mags have fed 100%, with none of the ride-over feed issues I often (usually) see with Para widebody .45ACP mags and stock springs. I guess springs that are marginal for 14 rounds of .45ACP are fine for 18 rounds of 9mm :)

I've also eight 17-rnd Mec-Gar mags and they all just worked out of the box with no futzing around (these are all LEO marked). These are what to buy for this gun unless you really really want that one extra shot. Note that Mec-Gar lists them as P18-.38Super on the front of the package, only if you look at the full product line table on the back of the package do you see the part number is really for .38Super/9mm

I load 18 rounds into the Para mags and 16 into the Meg-Gars and have 200 rounds ready to go at the plate rack and four empty 50-round ammo boxes :)

I've now got 2500 rounds thru it since its repair. No failures of any kind since the last cleaning some 500 rounds ago. Fantastic gun for the money, and my experience with Armscor service was really first rate.


March 26, 2006, 02:05 PM
How's the availablity of these ARMSCOR widebodies now?

March 26, 2006, 02:11 PM
There are two (same dealer) for $479 each on Pics too.:)


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