which 1911?


May 24, 2008, 11:06 PM
i just know this is gonna start a war...:evil:

i need a full size 5'' 1911, single stack mag. which maker has given you the best performance (no jams) and customer service?

i was thinking of a kimber custom stainless II or custom TLE II.
so does the custom or TLE have external extractors (the kind i prefer) or the older series 70 style internal extractors?

if not a kimber i was also leaning towards a S&W 1911 or something from springfield armory

so what yall think?

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May 24, 2008, 11:42 PM
Dan Wesson, Colt ,Springfield , RIA,
American Classic , New Firestorm,
Then may be I would lower my self to a Kimber I have one never again. The silly fingpin safety Finish doesn't hold up well , I removed grips to clean when first got and found frame rusty under the grips.

May 24, 2008, 11:50 PM

May 24, 2008, 11:51 PM
If it must be a 1911 get a Colt- it's the real deal and a fine weapon.

May 25, 2008, 12:17 AM
maybe not, older colt 1911's are awsome, dont get me wrong, but the newer ones i dunno, colt seems to think that because they had a military contract the 1911 is twice the gun it is. a bone stock colt runs about
$1000, when most other factory custom 1911's run about the same.

dad had a 1991 colt commander, helluva handgun, accurate and reliable, but unfortunately he sold it years ago.

ive heard good and bad things about kimbers, just like above. thats part of the reason i asked

all i know is this:
if i shell out 1000 bucks for a kimber, or any other 1911, it had better go bang every time.

STI are some damn fine handguns, but i never cared much for the "square" trigger guard look on some of their guns.

a guy i know let me dust some plates with his USPSA tuned STI 1911 in .38 super, one word: SWEET!!!

the sentinel premier model STI has caught my eye though, too bad it runs about $2000:banghead:

May 25, 2008, 12:18 AM
Smith and Wesson and Colt have a lifetime warranty. I believe Springfield Armory does as well. Kimber has a one year warranty. I've owned Colts and SAs and they have been reliable. The one Kimber I had was not, though this was a 3 inch barreled gun. Still, when I called Kimber they kept telling me to grip it harder. I've owned other 3 inch barreled 1911s and haven't had this problem. Kimber was just giving me the run around. I traded it toward a nicer gun.

SW has an excellent reputation for customer service and I don't think Colt or SA are much behind SW, if any. If you go Colt, look for one of the new "70 series" as these have triggers that can be tuned better than the 80 series. Neither SA nor SW use the 80 series firing pin safety.

P.S. I think Dan Wessons carry a 5 year warranty but can't confirm this.

May 25, 2008, 12:18 AM
i kinda like the custom stainless 1911 look anyway. if i do get another 1911 it will be for target and carry, when i need something more "accurate" than my glock 30. as much as i love it, a 3'' barrel and short sight radius aint that great for farther off. not that the g30 istn accurate, (but thats my excuse for the boss, aka girlfriend):evil:

are single stack STI 1911's compatable with other 1911 mags, or do they use propritary magazines?

May 25, 2008, 12:25 AM
so down to the wire:

an STI sentinel premier for about $2000 (ouch)

or a S&W model SW1911 in stainless
steel for about $1100 (not as bad)

May 25, 2008, 12:58 AM
Well, if you're going to put $2,000 into a gun, let me suggest a couple of others. Ed Brown's Kobra (not Kobra Carry) is a 5 inch gun that lists at $1995. Ed Brown is one of the most highly respected gun makers around. Other custom smiths buy his parts. Here's a picture of the Kobra from his web site:

I would also look at Les Baer, another highly respected gun maker. He has several that will list below $2,000 including the Premier II at $1790. Here's a picture from his website:

Les Baer's reputation for service is excellent. Ed Brown's a little less so (supposedly, you should deal with his sons rather than Ed Brown himself).

May 25, 2008, 01:00 AM
Sig GSR 1911. It has the external extractor.


May 25, 2008, 01:27 AM
I think you are on the right track with the S&W. I have a commander size with alloy frame and like it a lot. I have a SA Black Stainless, like he S&W trigger better.

May 25, 2008, 01:30 AM
mainsail is right dont have to worry about extractor tension sig granite series rail. more reliable

May 25, 2008, 01:55 AM
it really depends on how much you want to spend, but spring field armory has many great 1911 models in many price ranges. i am very happy with my sa mc operator, and i would reccomend them to anyone.

there loaded models are nice as well, and the gi models and mil specs even thought they are the lowest cost models they are good reliable accurate shooters too.

i would go at least with a loaded model if not the mc operator, or a trp operator.

as far as customer service. sa has one of the best in the business and they take care of there customers.

May 25, 2008, 03:36 AM
Don't forget Para. They are pretty decent nowadays.

M47 Dragon
May 25, 2008, 04:00 AM
or a S&W model SW1911 in stainless
steel for about $1100 (not as bad)

Wow... where are you seeing that price? The SW1911's should come in around $700-$800, unless you are talking about one of the custom jobs or something.

Great 1911's by the way - have two and they've been flawless.

May 25, 2008, 04:27 AM
At the moment, STI is making the best hand-fitted, non-custom 1911s. I have no doubt that will change within months because it is a very liquid industry. But, if I were to drop a grand on a 1911 right now it would be with STI.

May 25, 2008, 04:49 AM
I have three freaks of nature. Both of my series II Kimbers have been perfect for over a thousand rounds. My pre series II was perfect as well. They hit what I aim at, and they cycle perfectly every time. One of them is even a 9mm with a 4" barrel. Now they will probably start with the :cuss: and post a 10-8 link that says how bad Kimbers suck, but, please show me how mine suck!

They are as good as any Colt or springer off the shelf, but not as good as a custom. If you buy a higher end Kimber, get one used for $500 - 700. I don't think it is smart to pay over $800 for any gun with MIM parts. That means Colt, Springfield, or Kimber. I got my Eclipse for $650 like new in box. It hits where the front sight is placed. I can't ask for more than that.

May 25, 2008, 05:56 AM
I can't complain about Kimbers. Mine have always been flawless and my old Custom is the only .45 I have that feeds wadcutters 100 percent.

I have heard much whining about them of late. Truth is though, I've never actually seen a Kimber malfunction. My three will shoot to an inch at 25 yards.

OTOH, every STI I've fired has performed to the same parameters.

Based on my own experience it's a tossup.

May 25, 2008, 06:49 AM
STI has that spartan for ~600 that looks like a steal at the price, especially if you don't mind buying new magazines or have your own already.

May 25, 2008, 10:17 PM
Colt, Dan Wesson, Ed Brown -- can't go wrong w/ these :D

May 25, 2008, 10:23 PM

May 25, 2008, 10:34 PM

I'm with Loop. My original Kimber Custom has the Videki speed trigger, came stock with it, & will feed empties. Never had a problem with it. But I bought it when the company was new to the market.


May 25, 2008, 10:44 PM
I think 1911 owners like to tinker with their toys. I've never had one that was 100% reliable from day one. That said I've never spent the big bucks on one, I have 4 at this time, one Colt, two Kimbers, and a custom build with frame and slide from decent manufactuers. I just spent $300.00 on a new Colt delta Gold Cup to make it shoot acceptable groups, one of my Kimbers is a 98% gun with no tinkering, my last Kimber in a 9mm that seems to have cured itself after a few hundred rounds, exceptionaly accurate.

I think Colt is still selling the logo without putting the quality in they were known for first. I think Kimber could do a better job of insuring that a pistol was ready before it left the factory, simple little things like insuring that the extractor actually worked, none of mine have the external extractors.

These are just my opinions, feel free to disagree,:D

Edited to add, I love the 1911s, I like to tinker with my toys!!!

May 25, 2008, 10:53 PM
At the moment, STI is making the best hand-fitted, non-custom 1911s.

I think you would get a LOT of debate about that comment. Think Ed Brown, Wilson Combat, Nighthawk, Les Baer -- all high-end production 1911s.

May 25, 2008, 11:01 PM
I have 5 1911's
2 Colt 1991 models 1 is a 5" and 1 is a commander
Kimber custom II
SA stainless Super Tuned
SA Mil-Spec.
I have less than $2500 in all of them mainly because only the Kimber was bought new. They have been 100% reliable and only the commander length Colt is lacking in accuracy.

I've heard good things about the S&W as well. I'm sure the high dollar guns are great and are worth the money, but you do not have to spend a ton of money to get a dependable and accurate 1911.

May 25, 2008, 11:06 PM
I have four:


Smith & Wesson

Ed Brown

And my favorite, the SIG

May 26, 2008, 06:01 PM
Lot's of nice looking 1911's. But if it's not a Colt 1911, it's just another knockoff. I like my Browning Highpowers and Blued S&W revolvers too. Get what suits your needs and you'll do fine.

May 26, 2008, 10:20 PM
But if it's not a Colt 1911, it's just another knockoff.
I like Colts and think they are good handguns. There are better out there, however, and those who believe anything but Colt is "just another knockoff" is thinking with something other than their brain. The same thing with companies other than Colt who make AR-15 style rifles. They are not simply knock-offs.

It would be interesting to see how well a Colt made 1911 would sell if the Colt name wasn't associated with it and no prancing pony on it. My guess is that it would be criticized more for the MIM parts it has and the relatively loose frame to slide fit most have.

May 27, 2008, 12:30 AM
I have two 1911s at the moment. This one was my first.

Kimber Custom II -

It's a nice pistol, and a great introduction to the 1911 platform. I liked it so much that I went out and bought another 1911, a Les Baer Concept II.


I like both guns, but the Baer is in another league altogether. I'm not a great shooter, but my Baer makes me look better than I really am.

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