High End 1911s


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Shell Shucker
February 16, 2007, 09:42 PM
Does anyone have personal experience with "high end" 1911s? What can I expect of an @ $2000 Ed Brown, Les Bear, Nighthawk, ect. What about them is "over and beyond" a $1000-$1200 Kimber, Springfield Armory, ect?

The reasons I'm asking are. I've purchased many guns only to later wish I'd spent a little more and gotten something better. I read many posts telling of problems with "mid grade 1911s. Is the extra money well spent? If so; what brand.

How does the "street price" relate to 1911 MSRP?

I have owned several autos but never a 1911. Any insights are appreciated.

Thanks

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Black Majik
February 16, 2007, 10:09 PM
1911s are one of those things where they all shoot differently, but the differences are very subtle. It depends on whether or not you can tell the differences of craftsmanship, smoothness, and the shear joy of owning one of these guns.

In my opinion, starting out with a base gun will make you appreciate the semi-custom 1911s much more than just jumping straight for the semi-customs. I started out on a plain jane Colt. Bone stock GI sights, short thumb safety, no beavertail, and rattled like most Colt do. But at 7 yards it was still a one hole shooter. Then I picked up a Kimber Series I Classic Royal, and making those one hole shots were easier. At farther distances the Kimber started to show its accuracy advantages more, and the fit and finish was better than the Colt's. The gun was tighter, the safety clicked on and off more positive, and felt very smooth when fired. I still liked my Colt though, but it got less and less range time.

Then I bought a Les Baer. Tighter than a virgin's whoo-haa. That thing felt like one solid piece of steel. No movement between the slide and frame, barrel lockup was amazingly tight. The gun needed to be broken in, but you could feel the time that went into the gun. The parts were also better, all the parts seemed to streamline with the next. The way it shot? Oh my. I remember first time shooting it. I spent a few minutes shooting it and the rest of the time admiring it. Just shot so dang well. I didn't even have to try to shoot it well. The crisp trigger, undercut trigger guard, beavertail all helped my shooting a little. I felt like I didn't have to concentrate as much to shoot as well as the Kimber did. Then I started using it more and more, and it became my USPSA gun. After all those rounds, that thing is still tighter than the Kimber when I first bought it. But it's now buttery smooth.

So really, it depends. Would the quality parts and the hand fitting matter to you? Does a Baer, Brown, Nighthawk, Rock River, or Wilson feel different to you than the Kimbers, Colts, Para Ordnance, and Springfields?

In my opinion, I noticed the difference right away. It's money well spent. But it is a lot of cash to drop down. The regular production guns these days are GREAT shooters also. They can handle some beating and use. Shootability is a little different, but it really depends on whether or not the shooter can tell the difference.

I've also shot a Springfield Armory PRO. Very tight out of the box, but shot like a production gun. I couldn't tell a difference in shootability etc. But boy was that thing damn accurate. The fit and finish on that gun was flawless also.

The Browns are the stylish semi-custom guns. In my opinion the smoothest of the bunch. No sharp corners anywhere and it just shocks the person of beauty.

Well. I'd suggest looking at some, or definitely trying some out. See if they feel overpriced to you, or "perfect."

Everyone's different. But remember, not all 1911s shoot the same :evil:

Good luck!

briansp82593
February 16, 2007, 10:47 PM
get a sti 2011 or vip i shot the 2011 and it was niiiiiiccccceeeeee and very very very accurate :what:

robctwo
February 17, 2007, 12:53 AM
I bought a Springfield Loaded, a S&W1911PD Commander and an Ed Brown Exec. Target, in that order, over the past year. For me the Ed Brown is worth every penny. Not saying one bad word about the other two. I did a bunch of upgrades on the SA, but that was because I got the gun smithing bug and wanted a better trigger. I don't regret buying the first two, and am probably not done with the 1911 platform yet, still need one of them there Les Baers I do believe.

YoPedro
February 17, 2007, 01:25 AM
My first 1911 was a Springfield Trophy Match. It's an awesome gun, I love it. I shot that for a little more than a year then I was ready to upgrade. I ordered an SVI Infinity, Target Master 6" 1911 in .45 ACP. This is a sweet machine. I'm still getting use to the balance of a 6" bull bbl. At the same time, (yes, the very same day) I ordered a Sprinfield Custom Shop 1911 .45 Bullseye with a Bomar Rib. These are not off the shelf custom guns. You wont find them in gun shops, they have to be custom ordered with the features you want. Both guns are significantly different than my original Trophy Match, and I am comfortable with each. Now I am looking to add match grips to my guns to see if that will help on the accuracy department. although I can shot both guns 10x at 50 ft., one handed. I'm slow, but I'm accurate.

As for the big difference: The fit and opperation of each is amazing. Both have flawless triggers and the slide to frame fit is without exception. The Springfield was a bit tight at first but it is running smooth now.

One note though: My shooting buddy has an off the shelf $700 Springfield Target 1911, and he can slow fire 10x at 50 ft, single handed.

BullfrogKen
February 17, 2007, 01:55 AM
My first 1911 was an old plain Kimber Custom Classic. It was my entry gun into the 1911 world. And I knew it would be. I knew I'd want a 1911 LW Commander in 9x23 at some point, but I wasn't going to make that decision until I had some time with the standard 1911 and discovered my preferences.

Later I had Jim Garthwaite build that for me on a Colt LW Commander frame. And I later returned to his shop to spend a week with him and built a LW Commander in .45 ACP under his instruction.


The differences between a "production gun", a "high end production gun", and actual "custom built guns" aren't accuracy. They're all accurate enough. They are handguns, not precision rifles. The difference are found in handling, features, especially customized "made to order" features in the "custom built guns", and asthetics. Aesthetics includes articles such as finish, extreme attention to blending of parts (for extended carry that doesn't destroy your clothing), and personal attention to items that are important to you.

I'd suggest getting something basic at first, the basic the better. Even that base Colt can be worked on by guys like Ed Brown to be upgraded into a fine custom gun. Considerations for things like sights are open to more possibilities on a gun like that; once the slot is cut for a Heinie sight, or Novak's, you pretty much are committed to that sight and can't change without major costs involved. On basic guns, the sight channel is cut for that old GI sight, and you can have that cut to whatever you later decide you have a preference for.

If one can appreciate a custom gun, its quite well worth it. If he can't, then its a waste of money in his eyes.

Ala Dan
February 17, 2007, 07:54 AM
I prefer Les Baer's Thunder Ranch 1911 for my own use. Comes with a 5"
Kart barrel, factory Trijicon night sights, NO ambi safety's (which I'm glad
of), no sharp corners, three magazines, a Baer patch, a small bottle of
lubricant, very thin Thunder Ranch logo grips, and 30 lines per inch
checkering on the front strap (cut really high, for a more firm grip).

45auto
February 17, 2007, 08:01 AM
Keep in mind you are really not spending " a little more" for the higher end 1911s.

You can buy a full featured, so to speak, production 1911 for $700-$850 (roughly) and you will spend 2 to 3 times that for a "high-end" 1911.
So, that's a lot and it can or cannot be worth it for the above-mentioned reasons.

On the flip side, and to your point, once you get into the $1200+ "production" level 1911's, I would think real hard about a Baer, for example in that $1500-$1600 range.
Now, you are getting "close" IMHO. Still far from the Browns, Wilson, etc though.

critter
February 17, 2007, 08:35 AM
I have to vote with Black Majik and Ala Dan here. I recently bought a Les Baer. I fell in love before I ever shot it! Fantastic gun and built to fantastically close tolerances. HARD to cycle the slide. I thought 'no way in the world this thing will EVER work cause it is SO tight'. WRONG! Never a bobble!

I now have 1045 rounds through it-factory-RN, reload-RN, roload-SWC, JHP's, whatever. The LB doesn't care-it eats them all like candy. And now (they say it takes close to a 1000 rnds to break them in) it is as slick and smooth as a talcumed baby's butt.

Accuracy? Better than ANY 1911 I've EVER shot. Fantastic. If they aren't all going where you want them, it is YOUR fault-believe me.

I believe this is the 8th 1911 I've ever owned. I wish I had never owned the others and just started with the LB. I think I would be a better shot now! Best money I ever spent!

Good luck finding EXACTLY what you want. For me, LB was it!

Chuck R.
February 17, 2007, 08:59 AM
I've owned 7 Colt's over the years. I modified every one over time to my liking, everyone was reliable and accurate (enough). By the time I got done with each one, the cost was just shy of a semi-custom pistol and they had spent quite a bit of time in some smith's shop.

A year and half ago I bought my 1st Baer, same basic features as my Colt's by the time I got done with them. Difference was it was built "tight" and accurate from the start, and I didn't wait a cumulative year to get it the way I wanted it.

Now I'm on my second Baer, and I'm scheming to get a 3rd. I agree with the other guys, Brown's are fantastic pistols and I'd rate the finish above my Baer's. But when it comes to function, I think the Baer's are a better value. I don't think I'd treat a Brown the same way I treat my Stinger which is scarred up pretty good from CCW use.

Not everybody will appreciate a "high end" pistol, and not everybody feels they're worth it. As the others pointed out, if you're looking at a $1100 or $1200 Kimber or Colt, then a $1400-$1500 Baer isn't that far off. For me, once I cross a certain threshold, a little more is moot.

Whether it's worth it or not is up to you.

Chuck

Lone_Gunman
February 17, 2007, 09:10 AM
Two Words: Diminishing Returns.

Yes, your custom 1911 will shoot a little better than your stock 1911. But in the real world, it will not be enough to matter, and even at the range, unless you are paying attention, you won't be able to tell a difference either.

Custom 1911s look better, and have better fit and finish. And then there is pride of ownership.

But from a practical, self defense standpoint, they are not worth $1200 more than a stock pistol.

Rinspeed
February 17, 2007, 10:01 AM
I think Les Baer by far offers the most 1911 for the money. Some don't like the way they are hard fit but as long as they are reliable I'll take a tight 1911 over a loose one any day. They really do feel like you are holding one solid piece of steel. Those Ed Brown guns are very sweet and I will have one someday. STI offers a very nice 1911 for $900 to 1200. Sporting Arms has some very competitive pricing on a lot of different 1911s and they are very good people to deal with.

varoadking
February 17, 2007, 11:09 AM
But from a practical, self defense standpoint, they are not worth $1200 more than a stock pistol.

You drive a Hundai?

the pistolero
February 17, 2007, 12:19 PM
But from a practical, self defense standpoint, they are not worth $1200 more than a stock pistol.

You drive a Hundai?
I'm guessing Lone Gunman doesn't drive a Hundai, or a Hyundai for that matter, but there's no denying one can be made just as dead with a $300 Rock Island Armory or Norinco as with a $2300 Wilson or Nighthawk. Whoever doesn't agree, that's their right, but in lieu of looking down their nose and making half-witted snarks, for once, just once, I'd like to see them put their money where their mouth is and send a Nork/RIA/<insert low-end 1911 maker of choice here> owner a check for $3000 or so to cover the cost of one of those custom 1911s and a few boxes of ammo to put through it.

noops
February 17, 2007, 01:32 PM
I have an Ed Brown special forces, and it's hands down my favorite pistol. I think it's worth it. The only 1911 makers I'd buy from are Ed Brown, Les Baer, and Nighthawk (maybe Wilson as well). Are they worth it? Sure was to me. Thing is great.

N

Black Majik
February 17, 2007, 03:49 PM
Guns, cars, they all get the job done. A Honda Accord will get you to your destination just as well as an AMG CLS 55.

A Rock Island will hit that 10 ring just as well as a Rock River.

It's just experiencing the moment to get there :D

ezypikns
February 17, 2007, 04:26 PM
I think they're great pistols. But I just might pop for a Les Baer someday to see what the fuss is about. What folks choose to spend on their hobby is strictly their own business. But even if I spend 2500.00 on a custom 1911, I will have only spent a fraction of what my neighbor spent on his Bass fishing rig.
To each his own.

varoadking
February 17, 2007, 05:43 PM
there's no denying one can be made just as dead with a $300 Rock Island Armory or Norinco as with a $2300 Wilson or Nighthawk. Whoever doesn't agree, that's their right, but in lieu of looking down their nose and making half-witted snarks, for once, just once, I'd like to see them put their money where their mouth is and send a Nork/RIA/<insert low-end 1911 maker of choice here> owner a check for $3000 or so to cover the cost of one of those custom 1911s and a few boxes of ammo to put through it.

This makes less than no sense...

DogBonz
February 17, 2007, 06:34 PM
Even Lone Gunman's remark... well almost.

From a "practical self defense" stand point, a $700 USP or SIG will be just as viable a self defense weapon. However, "worth" is determined by what someone is willing to pay for it. Babe Ruth's rookie base ball card is worthless for practical purposes. It is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars because thats what someone is willing to pay for it.

Anyway back on topic: The day that I shot an Ed Brown Kobra, I sold my Kimber and started saving for one. Then I got the best (or worst) idea ever... why spend $2K on a semi custom, when I can spend a little more and get a full custom. Great idea, right? Well as of today, I have spent $1700 in parts, and my smith has yet to touch it. It's a Caspian Classic SS frame with a Caspian Damascus slide, and all high end parts...

I'll keep you guys up to date as it progresses, but for now it has been a lot of back and forth with the smith, placing orders, planning, revising plans, changing orders, re-planning... You get the idea

wooderson
February 17, 2007, 06:57 PM
You drive a Hundai?
Hyundai sedan vs. Honda vs. Mercedes, perhaps.
You might give up a little something between the first two (Rock Island and a Springfield Loaded) - reliability, performance.

But between the Honda and the Mercedes, you're not really giving up anything except for style and prestige. (on, of course, a much smaller scale)

Once you've got the feature-set you like (finish, sights, etc., all forged parts/no MIM if that's your thing), I'm not sure there's enough difference between a well-built semi-custom pistol (Springfield TRP Operator, Les Baer Thunder Ranch) and a $2700 Nighthawk to justify the cost in my mind. If I had the money, sure, I'd love a Nighthawk, but $1000-1500 is a big difference.

And once you're past the $2000 barrier, you get into 'what about a base Springfield or Colt and sending it off to Yost-Bonitz for the 1* package...'

Rinspeed
February 17, 2007, 07:57 PM
I would take a Baer or Brown over a YoBo 1* any day. No comparison in my opinion.

Dobe
February 17, 2007, 08:16 PM
I have an Ed Brown, and by far it is the nicest 1911 I own. To me, it was worth the extra $.

Dobe

BullfrogKen
February 17, 2007, 09:04 PM
wooderson said:I'm not sure there's enough difference between a well-built semi-custom pistol (Springfield TRP Operator, Les Baer Thunder Ranch) and a $2700 Nighthawk to justify the cost in my mind.

I will readily admit I once said to a Team Member, after he told me about his STI, and his IPSC racegun, "I can't justifty owning a pistol that costs $2000. I'll never spend that much on a pistol." Two >$2000 1911's later, I'm planning on when I'll build #3.

wooderson said: And once you're past the $2000 barrier, you get into 'what about a base Springfield or Colt and sending it off to Yost-Bonitz for the 1* package...'

Well, you're also into the, "Jim/Dane/<insert other master pistolsmith's name here>, I'd like <this> built. What frames and slides can we choose from?" and not even have to supply the base gun. The frames and slides will be purchased unfinished and get truly built from the parts up.


Some folks won't appreciate it, and suggest rounds impact downrange the same from a $3000 full blown custom as they do El Cheapo, and to that I say, "I agree". So, I guess you carry a 100 year old .38 revolver then? The rounds impact the same . . .

The draw for those guns isn't accuracy. If you spent 3X what a base Colt costs just for accuracy, and you don't make money winning competitions, I'd say you wasted your money. They have other, more practical reasons, and some of them have nothing to do with shooting it at all. A fella who carries a gun in excess of 12 hours every day becomes pretty intimate with it, and might want it made to not tear his clothing or cause him unnecessary discomfort.

phantomak47
February 17, 2007, 09:35 PM
What about Wilsons, how do they compare with the Baers and Browns?

mrcpu
February 17, 2007, 09:48 PM
IF I had the disposable income, I'd own an ed brown in a second. I shot one a while back, really enjoyed it.

But I've shot other guns that I've enjoyed that weren't 2000 dollars either.

And there doesn't really seem to be any reliability advantage, there are certainly complaints about high-end guns failing as well. Whether or not it's statisically valid is anudder problem all together.

If money is a non-issue, buy what you like.

If money is an issue, and SD is your reason for carrying, just because the BG is carrying a tricked out Ed-Brown hand-tuned by Ed himself, doesn't give him any more an advantage than any gun you might own that wasn't that expensive that's reliable, and that you've trained on.

If money is an issue, and you just like guns, then be envious of those that can afford them, because they are really nice.

For me, while I can throw a large portion of my gun budget into buying an ed-brown, I want variety, so I'm spreading the wealth. Maybe when've bought one of just about everything, I"ll go back and specialize... :)

conan
February 17, 2007, 09:52 PM
Ok, now I am confused?

The very reason I want to own one of these fine custom guns is because of accuracy. Some seem to imply that they may not be more accurate than regular production guns, or am I just misreading?

mrcpu
February 17, 2007, 10:05 PM
Define what you mean by accurate. DO you want to target shoot with one at 50 yards and putin 1.5" groups? Do you want 45, 10mm, 9mm? There's lot of options in 1911...

Or are you looking for accuracy as it relates to self-defense, where the distances are much closer, or what... IN which case, there aren't too many 1911's that are "inaccurate" for that kind of work. I suppose a couple shoot around corners, but ...

So lay out your parameters. A good gun smith can do wonders as long as he has a good base to work from, lots of people build up 1911's starting with caspian parts, and other manufacturers, you need to give more detail.

But in short, I don't think that 2000 dollars buys you a much tighter group than 1000 dollars. It may buy you a tighter group than 500 dollars, but not by much...

conan
February 17, 2007, 10:17 PM
Define what you mean by accurate. DO you want to target shoot with one at 50 yards and putin 1.5" groups?

Say 1" at 25 yards.

Do you want 45, 10mm, 9mm? There's lot of options in 1911...

9mm.


But in short, I don't think that 2000 dollars buys you a much tighter group than 1000 dollars. It may buy you a tighter group than 500 dollars, but not by much...

But if the groups go from 2-3"'s to 1", it would be worth it to me. Not saying I can hold a gun to tell the difference, but with practice I would like to do that in a 1911.

mrcpu
February 17, 2007, 10:38 PM
I am not a good enough shooter myself to say, but I suspect that:

o) Almost any non-bottom-of-the-barrel 1911 is more accurate than most shooters ever will be.

o) There are supposedly accuracy advantages to bushingless barrel systems, which seem to be on the more high-end guns.

o) I don't have the mags stacked in front of me, but I suspect 1" groups at 25 yards from a 1911 is pretty much doable by any medium or higher priced 1911 with good quality target ammo

o) There are exceptional mid-range guns that just happen to be really tight and shoot great, and I suspect there are top-range guns that aren't fitted as well as they should be, and won't shoot tight no matter what.

o) I do believe that STI offers an accuracy guarantee on their target grade pistols, which is probably where you should look. I am not aware of any accuracy guarantee on any other brand, but that doesn't mean they don't, only that I don't know it.

You didn't mention if you were referring to self-defense, or really only plinking/target shooting. I think the high-end STI's have like a 6" barrel, ported, compensated, etc, that would make carrying it tricky as all get out...

Others who know more will have to take it from here, as I am at the limit of my knowledge of things 1911...

conan
February 17, 2007, 11:01 PM
Thanks mrcpu, I am thinking about a bull barreled Sti. They make them in 9mm. But after hearing about the Baers and browns ect, I only have money for one. Target shooting is what I am after.

Chuck R.
February 17, 2007, 11:05 PM
conan,

Les Baer's standard guarantee is 3" at 50 yards. If that's not good enough, for a few dollars more you can get the optional 1.5" at 50 yard guarantee. :D

Chuck

BullfrogKen
February 17, 2007, 11:16 PM
If you are in fact skilled enough to keep your shots at 1" at 25 yards, you should buy the most accurate handgun you can find for your target shooting interests.

GreenFurniture
February 17, 2007, 11:27 PM
I've owned and shot just about every quality 1911 produced.

From my experience Ed Brown 1911s are far above and beyond Wilson, Baer, Nighthawk, STI and others.

Tight groups, endless reliability, excellent value retention and very comfortable to both carry and shoot.

the pistolero
February 18, 2007, 02:34 AM
there's no denying one can be made just as dead with a $300 Rock Island Armory or Norinco as with a $2300 Wilson or Nighthawk. Whoever doesn't agree, that's their right, but in lieu of looking down their nose and making half-witted snarks, for once, just once, I'd like to see them put their money where their mouth is and send a Nork/RIA/<insert low-end 1911 maker of choice here> owner a check for $3000 or so to cover the cost of one of those custom 1911s and a few boxes of ammo to put through it.
This makes less than no sense...

Why?

mrcpu
February 18, 2007, 03:41 AM
Well, before you plunk down 3k for an EB, enjoy:

http://forum.m1911.org/showthread.php?t=24880&page=1&pp=10

Extremist
February 18, 2007, 09:28 AM
These are two superb 1911s and I own both of them. The SW1911 Performance Center black melonite finish gun is executed flawlessly. It is very accurate and beautiful to boot.

I just acquired a Les Baer Premier II with the tactical package. I also have a couple of Les Baer TRS. They are also flawlessly executed.

Either of these can be had for around $1500-1600. They are in my opinion the best out there in this price range.

James

Dobe
February 18, 2007, 09:31 AM
Well, before you plunk down 3k for an EB, enjoy:

http://forum.m1911.org/showthread.ph...0&page=1&pp=10


You're kidding, right? Ed Brown is a second rate 1911, because a receptionist didn't understand the question?

Ed Brown is not the only quality high end 1911 manufacturer, but their 1911's are top notcch.

bofe954
February 18, 2007, 06:09 PM
I was hunting for a LW commander for awhile and was pretty set on a scandium smith.

I had looked at a few and wasn't super impressed with fit and finish, the triggers seemed loose in frame and some minor details. Probably nothing that would effect function. Cost- 800 or so.

Got a Les Baer Concept X off this board for a little less than 1200. Well worth a few hundred extra bucks, I'll never sell it, so what's a few hundred over the next 30-50 years. It also had a few features that I prefered, like no forward cocking serrations, and some checkering. The stainless slide is pretty well polished and better looking than that of the S+W.

In my hands function is probably about the same.

As for Ed Brown, I am sure they are nice but I would have a hard time carrying a 3K dollar gun.

Eventually I may get a TRS for IPSC stuff, I have a Kimber Classic Target right now.

I think the Yo-Bo types of things are beginning to move beyond a gun to carry/use/shoot and move in to the realm of art, although functional art.

My advice, think hard about what features you really want and find the pistols that have them. Look at them and decide which you want, then save for the one you really want. If it's what you really want, it's worth it. If you get what you want you'll keep it longer. What really becomes expensive is buying and selling guns multiple times trying to find what you want.

Harold Mayo
February 19, 2007, 12:58 AM
The poster on that other forum with the complaint really didn't seem to understand what was going on in the first place. More of a troll than anything, if you ask me.

If he doesn't have enough knowledge to change out a guide rod himself, I don't really think that he has much business talking about guys who have been in the 1911 building business for decades.

While my personal experience with Ed Brown himself has not been all that good (he came across exactly as one of the posters on that other forum stated), I've never seen one of his guns that had problems. You almost NEVER see EB pistols on the secondary market. You OFTEN see Wilson and Baer pistols on the secondary market. Not saying that Brown is better (and you have to look at the number of pistols each company puts out), but you just never see used ones for sale and that forum is the first where I've ever heard of multiple people complaining, too.

pete f
February 19, 2007, 04:37 AM
As far as Ed's personality, I have not met him, but have dealt with him several times as we had customers ordering in guns from him. He does not have the time to listen or talk to all the mall ninja's who call him and want to endlessly discuss the dream 45 they are never going to buy because working at walmart as loss protection will never pay enough to buy the thing.

When we called he was not rude, just short, and he said he had much to do, chit chat was not on his agenda. We gave him the info he needed and forwarded a copy of the stores FFL and he was very clear on times and deadlines. I would say he was utterly professional, and yet not overly social, which I fully understand.

After the second gun deal went thru with no hitches, He dealt with us a bit more relaxed and was always very attentive to detail. When one of the guns had a problem, It was out and back in just a few days. The gun was fixed totally and with a hand written note explaining the issue and the cure.
For this fact alone, I would deal with his firm again.

I was not around when Nighthawk started, although We did do some Wilson guns when those guys were still there. We had one problem with a Wilson gun that left a bad taste in all our mouths and we decided to steer more business to Brown or Heinie. EGW is another place that IF i had a good gun and wanted to go to town on, I would talk to, they seem to keep the turnaround down, and are cost effective.

In all the 1911 pattern guns there are many places for a gunsmith to ply his trade. Most do not remember that the weapon was meant to be a 5 inch gun at 25 or so yards. That it was expected that most of its uses would be in trenches or at the parapets defending against storming troops at bad breath ranges. The very fact that people can make 1 inch at 50 yards guns out of the platform is a testament to JMB.

It however, takes a great deal of understanding to make the 1911 into a 1 inch at 25 yard gun that will work 100.00% of the time, with no bobbles, no malf's of any kind. I would say that if you can accept a 2" at 25 yard gun that runs 100% of the time, you can cut your costs by more than half.

There are a great many Good smiths out there, working on 1911's, there are some real artists, as well, and some genius's who have made the step to the top.

I have an old Pachmayr and an old Kings gun works 1911 complete with aS&W K frame rear sight. Both are very accurate, both are exceedingly reliable when fed the proper ammo. The Pachmayr was made up as as duty gun, about a 3 inch at 25 yard gun, superb trigger, very crisp and reliable safety, and absolutely will not ever fail shooting ball ammo. That was the desired set up and it was all that was needed. The Kings was set up to shoot wadcutters, it started as a national match and moved on from there. It will only function on SWC's loaded to 830 or so feet per second. load it hotter, and baulks at feeding, Load it slower, and they do not eject cleanly, but run the right loads and it just runs like a watch. The feed lips and ramp is cut so perfectly that it will load empty cases.

as good as either of these are, they are very tightly tied to really only one load. one likes Duty ball, the other, Match SWC loads. A Brown or a STI or a Evo gun works will eat anything

Yeah they are worth the money in the way that if you look and enjoy the level of workmanship, the thought nad the performance they are wonderful investments.

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