1911 vs CZ-97B


September 9, 2006, 06:08 PM
I am a huge 1911 fan and currently own an early model Kimber Custom Classic (been an excellent gun) and a Colt Combat Commander XSE. I have had numerous 1911's through the years and have only had 1911 style .45's.

I bought a Pre-B CZ-75 and this pistol has become my favorite 9mm. I am so impressed with my CZ-75, I am seriously considering buying a CZ-97B in the next couple of months.

I know from reading about the CZ-97 some are finicky about some hollow-points, the grip is kinda' big (my hands are medium/large), and the accuracy is superb( like my CZ-75).

Are there any folks that currently or have owned a 1911 and CZ-97? I know you can't compare the triggers but wonder overall what your experiences with these two have been like?

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September 9, 2006, 07:55 PM
Schmeky, I have both and there isn't a good comparison because their feel is so different. The 97b is big it feels wide in my hand and the first double acton pull is long. It's heavy. It shoots softly and accurately.

My 1911 is lighter and crisper but I'm not as familiar with the trigger and safety operation.

if I was shooting a competition I would use the 97 first because of my familiarity with it and the two extra shots.


September 10, 2006, 07:22 AM
My Kimber and my 97B are two of my three most accurate pistols, the other being my 75B SA in .40 s&w.

My 97B was one of the ones that didn't like some hollowpoints, but a little tweaking fixed that, and so far since then it's been 100% with everything.

As for how they feel there's not much basis for comparison. The 97B's grip is bulkier but still fits me well. 97Bs on average seem to have reasonably good triggers out of the box for traditional DA/SA, and will smooth very well over time, but will never compare to a tuned 1911 trigger, unlike my 75B SA which comes pretty close.

IMO as long as the grip works for you, the 97B is an excellent range or nightstand pistol.

September 10, 2006, 09:12 AM
I have tried to compare accuracy with both and haven't found one better than the other.


September 10, 2006, 10:14 AM
I currently have fourteen 1911s and five and a half* CZs including a 97B. The 97 is my favorite non-1911 platform, Sig 220 SS performance at 2/3 the price plus extra OEM magazines can be had for about $17 bucks, what’s not to like. Mine has been 100% with ball, 200 gr LSWCs, and HPs . The only changes I’ve made is a 16# Wolff recoil spring and a FLGR. (Note the FLGR was not needed but for the price of an 8” SS bolt and 20 minutes at the work bench it’s a nice addition.) The 97B will definitely out shoot all but the best of my 1911s and in this case we are comparing $1500 to $2000+ guns to a $500 gun, and those for the most part will only equal the CZ.


* - One 75B dedicated to a Kadet kit thus a “half”.

Lucky 7
September 10, 2006, 10:24 AM
The Witness is a good medium :rolleyes:, but (in regards to the question) I dig the 1911 a lil more than the CZ. The 97's too big for me and while I'm familiar with the operations of it, I learned autoloaders with a 1911. There's something about your first love (high sweethearts or handguns) that gives ya that warm and fuzzy.

schmeky: if you really like the 75 try a Witness for your .45. It's slimmer than the 97 (which is an important consideration for me), but every bit as accurate. I just purchased my second Carry-Comp and fell in love all over again.

Regards and Semper Fi!

September 10, 2006, 11:09 AM
The 1911 packs better, but I shoot the CZ better - it fits my hand and I seem to index more consistently with it than any other pistol.

I have sold MOST of my 1911's in favor of CZ but I'll always have a couple around 'just in case'. :)

September 10, 2006, 11:16 AM
Lucky 7,

I haven't considered the Witness, I know they are baiscally CZ clones made by Tanfoglio.

I know the 97 is a big heavy gun, but I like steel in my pistols for shooting. My Kimber is a tack driver and from what I read about the 97, it is as accurate as many .45's costing a lot more.

Sounds as though the 97 will shoot as softly and as accurately as my CZ-75 does in 9mm. The best prices I have found range between $450-$500 plus shipping and transfer fees.

Soon as I sell my NIB Ruger P-93 DAO ($260), I'll be narrowing down a 97.

Buck Nekkid
September 10, 2006, 01:24 PM
Pardner, you are gonna love the 97B! Here's a pic of my "RSR Special" 97 and matching 75B. As you can see there really is NOT that much difference in size and with custom grips you can make it fit you perfectly if that's your desire. I'd also check www.czshooters.com or www.czforum.com for members tryin' to sell their 97's. I think I've seen one or two on their "for sale" areas lately.


September 10, 2006, 03:21 PM

That is a spectacular pair of CZ's. I love the finishes and the laminated grip panels. Just awesome.

Buy my Ruger so I can get me a 97 :p

Uncle Alvah
September 10, 2006, 03:39 PM
I have an old 1911 Military and a 97b.
The 97 will shoot rings around the old 1911, as might be expected, and is more pleasant to shoot besides. Serious handfull of weapon.
My only grip with the 97 is that I have had the finish chip in a couple places, tiny marks, but still not thrilled. I'm not overly cautious about knocking the gun around, but it's a long way from abused too. Will probably have it re-finished someday, but it's not a priority right now....

June 26, 2010, 05:29 AM
I have to admit that until I hand fitted a new match barrell bushing on my 1911, the CZ 97B shot one-hole groups and knocked down more steel plates than I thought possible with my old slabsides. It does'nt, as popular legend suggests, feed even the best hollow points. But it doesnt matter much if you can shoot a smiley face into a target or knock down 8" plates all day long.
The CZ comes with a Bianchi UM 87 Military belt holster.

June 26, 2010, 10:44 AM
Love these resurrected threads. Can't believe how much things have changed since this thread was started. I did indeed get a 97, then another, then another. I presently have 2 (I had an RSR Special and sold it :cuss: ).

The 97 is now my favorite 45 platform; can't believe I prefer it over a 1911. Anyhow, everyone was right, it's accurate, soft shooting, and fits my hand like it was poured in. Built solid and has been reliable beyond belief.


June 26, 2010, 02:25 PM
That's purty schecky.

They are a bit big for my hands (wide but short), but I still may end up with one someday. I had a Witness Silver Team that was a pleasure to shoot. I sold it to fund something else, but have always missed it a little.

June 28, 2010, 08:32 PM
I had a Witness in .45 ACP, but I had to sell it. A friend of mine shot it, and really liked it and has two 97B's now, a new untouched one, and another with custom grips, and it's been cleaned up a little inside, and shoots just about anything he puts in it 100%. I love that gun. My Witness shot anything at all, and except for a dropping mag issue that was just a burr on the retaining slots, was perfect through a couple thousand rounds. I will probably be buying a 9mm fullsized Witness soon.

June 29, 2010, 08:29 PM
I love the 97B!

But my Colt O1918 WWI Repro is my favorite pistol.

June 29, 2010, 08:36 PM
I bought a Pre-B CZ-75 and this pistol has become my favorite 9mm. I am so impressed with my CZ-75, I am seriously considering buying a CZ-97B in the next couple of months.

It that case, the EAA Witness Elite Match .45 is the gun you really want! Its what the CZ97 should have been!

If a Glock 21 is a good fit for you, then the CZ97 will likely be great, but neither work for me anywhere near as well as the Elite Match, 1911 or CZ75.

The CZ97 and Elite Match take the same magazine, which was hard to believe with how much better the Elite Match feels in my hand.

June 30, 2010, 09:20 AM

How about some more pics of that custom 97 you've been putting together?


June 30, 2010, 09:32 AM

I'm still working on it. In this pic, the frame dust cover has been cut back and lightened, the slide is high polish blue, the frame is matte blue; looks similiar to a big Colt Commander. I'm re-doing the finish so it no longer looks like this. It has:

CZ Competition Hammer
Drilled and tapped trigger for overtravel
Slicked up internals
Wolf 15# hammer spring
Machined the slide and Bo-Mar rear sight for no seams
Drilled and tapped frame for 1911 grip bushings
Installed 1911 engraved grip screws
Drilled and slotted slide for a 1911 match barrel bushing
Fiber optic front sight
Sanded and contoured stock grips
Machined dust cover and lightened frame
SS recoil spring guide rod
Fully recut slide serrations


Here's the left side:


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