First 1911


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Blofeld
September 7, 2008, 12:48 AM
I can afford $400, I desperately want a 1911. I'm very familiar with the gun, and would prefer a 5" barrel. What is my best option, and how much customization should I consider?

Thanks in advance.:)

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thebucket
September 7, 2008, 02:34 AM
Wow, I started a thread about building an AR-15 SBR in Legal and suddenly My First AR-15 threads popped up in Rifles and now I've been thinking about getting a 1911 and 1911 threads have been popping up. Cool. I've heard people say good things about Rock Island Armory but the local gun shop (Tony's Guns outside of Shaw AFB) is quoting $500-ish for them. And he had a used Auto-ordnance in the $400's. A Charles Daly was going for $500ish as well. Those prices seem a tad high from what I've heard other people say though.

funnelcake
September 7, 2008, 03:06 AM
New at 400 or less pretty much means one of the Philippine made models. Rock Island guns have a good reputation & I've read positive comments about their service. They run about 350 and up. For customizations, I'd shoot it first. If you want features like larger sites, extended grip safeties, etc. I'd spend another 50 bucks and go with the Rock Island Tactical model (start about 425) or similar up front. Upgrading after the fact will always cost more.

If you can save up another 100, the Springfield pistols are accessible as well as Taurus (read not good things about their service). The Taurus guns do have several "features" for the price. You also start seeing used Colt 1991 models in the 500 buck range.

Good luck...Funnel

tomh1426
September 7, 2008, 03:12 AM
RIA makes a great 1911 and you can get them for under $400.

possum
September 7, 2008, 09:07 AM
another RIA, you are gonna have to go that route for that money. but that is ok they are reliable and accurate. stick with 230gr ball ammoi and you we will be fine, you could branch out and try swc and stuff and they might feed. in my limited experience they love and eat ball like it is no tommorow.

also RIA has several models, and i personally prefer there compact model with the commander hammer, beavertail, and ambi saefty.

12Bravo20
September 8, 2008, 10:04 AM
I paid $425 for my Rock Island Tactical about 9 months ago. I haven't tried anything other than FMJ in it (it hasn't hiccuped once on me). For a new pistol in the $400 range, I would go with the Rock Island otherwise look for a used one .

Blofeld
September 8, 2008, 10:09 AM
Rock Island it is, then. Getting excited already;)

cjw3cma
September 8, 2008, 12:28 PM
Check out CenterFire Systems (http://www.centerfiresystems.com/AC-RI1911-CSP.aspx) for the best RIA pricing (link goes to the Compact CSP - the tactical version with most of the bells added already).

rellascout
September 8, 2008, 01:13 PM
If you know your 1911s you know that for $400 you are not going to get anything better than an RIA at that price.

IMHO I would wait and save another $150 and get a good used pistol. I recently sold a GSR for $575 shipped and it was a superior pistol to an RIA in every way.

Blofeld
September 8, 2008, 01:54 PM
I accept that. But I also think that a 1911, moreso than perhaps any other pistol, if purchased used is going to be REALLY used. I've seen the used pistols that went to the range once and were relegated to a drawer, but my feeling is a used 1911 lived at a range and saw thousands of rounds.

And a new one just really appeals to me.:)

rellascout
September 8, 2008, 02:23 PM
To each their own but a properly bought used pistol is a much better deal than a new one. The vast majority of handguns will never see more than a few thousand rounds.

A 1911 is no different then any other gun. If you must buy new I would still wait. Get to the $600 range and get a Springer.

gotime242
September 8, 2008, 03:58 PM
My friend just picked up a ria tactical for 389 at centerfire...i shot it and think its awsome. Super accurate...no problems at all.

I say +1

XDKingslayer
September 8, 2008, 04:10 PM
Yep, RIA Tactical is about the best gun for that money. And that's not a bad thing, the RIA is a great 1911. You won't be disappointed.

chupacabrah
September 8, 2008, 04:26 PM
I'm planning on getting an RIA for my first 1911 also....and probably second 1911. :evil:

weisse52
September 8, 2008, 04:33 PM
For 400 the RIA is a great deal.

My personal preference is to Colts and Springfields. But the RIA gets great reviews and the couple I have shot them seem very solid.

Now for the other part. This is a great gun at a great price that will enable you to determine if you like the 1911 platform. If you do not, I am betting you will get a lot of the purchase price if you decide to sell.

If you do like the 1911's then consider moving up to a better platform and just keep your RIA as your backup.

XDKingslayer
September 8, 2008, 04:46 PM
If you do like the 1911's then consider moving up to a better platform and just keep your RIA as your backup.

I thought like that too. I figured I'd get the RIA and use it to learn about the 1911 platform and get used to it. But I've found not one reason to buy a $1000 Kimber or Springfield when my RIA does the same exact thing for half that.

What is there to possibly upgrade to when the RIA is drop dead reliable so far and as far as accuracy goes will group all 8 rounds touching at 15 yards?

weisse52
September 8, 2008, 06:18 PM
I like a 1911 with a better fit and finish than RIA offers.

They are nice guns, if they fill your requirements then they are perfect.

possum
September 8, 2008, 07:27 PM
my 1st 1911 was over $1000 and i plan on getting a RIA next, if that tells you anything.

if a $1000 gun is 100% reliable, and a $400 gun is 100% reliable, seems to me that they are on pretty even playing fields right off the get go.

oklahoma caveman
September 8, 2008, 07:36 PM
my ria tactical from sarco has run great. cost 425. shoots hps as well as fmjs without a problem, good accuracy and ria has great customer service from all that i hear. if you interested in them go to 1911forum.com they have a ria forum there and 2 of the representatives of ria are registered members that are on there daily

Sagetown
September 8, 2008, 09:25 PM
At the gun shop, a few weeks back, I was shown an RIA GI for $365, and an RIA Tactical for $415. All other brands began at $100 above the Tactical and went up^$$$.:)

bgeddes
September 8, 2008, 11:36 PM
My first 1911 is an RIA. Now I am looking into the other variants of this Masterpiece. It's my second love (firearms wise). The first is the heaven sent M60. The Rock Island feels great, shoots great, hits hard, and will fire every time, therefore near a perfect unit. You could pistol whip a buffalo with a 1911!

The problem is, once you go, one is not enough. Now I HAVE to have another.

FlyinBryan
September 8, 2008, 11:49 PM
if what all you guys say is true about rock islands (and i cant imagine all of you having the same story and it not be true, lol)

then im impressed with rock island. especially on the running 100% part.


my first 1911 back in about 86 was a colt government model. it was the most beautiful job of bluing a slide ive ever seen, still to this day. it literally looked like a black mirror. it also shot like a dream and NEVER JAMMED.

my second was a colt gold cup. the gov. model was better.

mt current model is a kimber pro-carryII. it didnt run good at all when it was new. now with hand loads it will stovepipe every 100 rds or so and seems to be getting better and better.


with all the positive feedback im hearing on the RIA pistols, im considering one myself.

ezypikns
September 8, 2008, 11:52 PM
I've owned two. Both Mil-Spec types (small "G.I" sights). I put larger sights on one. The other I used as it was out of the box. Both accurate enough for anyone. Both reliable. Buy one with confidence.

MarshallDodge
September 9, 2008, 12:08 AM
Oh brother :rolleyes:

A Rock Island is what it is, a fairly reliable $400 1911, and probably not a bad gun for starters. The frame is cast not forged, the fit and finish is OK, and the small parts will probably last for about 5, maybe 10K rounds. It is not a $1000 1911 nor will it shoot like a $1000 1911 unless someone on here has the targets to prove me wrong. :D , or maybe you spent too much for the gun.

But hey, you can buy two and a half of them for $1000.

My recommendation would be to save a few more dollars and get a used Loaded Springfield.

possum
September 9, 2008, 08:31 AM
A Rock Island is what it is, a fairly reliable $400 1911, and probably not a bad gun for starters.
for starters that is funny, i don't think the guys that own 8 RIA 1911's are "starters", or the fellows that have been shooting 1911's thier whole life who own kimber, sa, les baer, s&w and RIA pistols, these people can be found all over the 1911 forums. www.1911forum.com in particular, and www.m1911.org check em out there are alot of happy owners, and if they run they run, that is all the re is too it.

like i said before.....
if a $1000 gun is 100% reliable, and a $400 gun is 100% reliable, seems to me that they are on pretty even playing fields right off the get go.

MarshallDodge
September 9, 2008, 11:32 AM
for starters that is funny, i don't think the guys that own 8 RIA 1911's are "starters", or the fellows that have been shooting 1911's thier whole life who own kimber, sa, les baer, s&w and RIA pistols, these people can be found all over the 1911 forums. www.1911forum.com in particular, and www.m1911.org check em out there are alot of happy owners, and if they run they run, that is all the re is too it.

Possum, I didn't say anybody was unhappy with their purchase or should be, and I didn't say if you are an experienced 1911 shooter that you shouldn't have one. Heck, for $400, I have been considering the officer size model as a truck gun.

If you are telling Blofeld that he can get a $1000 1911 for $400 then you are leading him down the wrong road. Even though it may be just as reliable, the fit, finish, parts quality, and accuracy will not be the same.

I am a member of both of the mentioned forums, own several 1911's including Colt, Norinco, Les Baer, Kimber, and Springfield, and just finished building my second one so I think I know a little bit about 1911's. :D

MarshallDodge
September 9, 2008, 11:37 AM
Doubled

possum
September 9, 2008, 11:39 AM
If you are telling Blofeld that he can get a $1000 1911 for $400 then you are leading him down the wrong road. Even though it may be just as reliable, the fit, finish, parts quality, and accuracy will not be the same.
you are right that is not the intended message that i was trying to get across, and if it came off that way that is totally not right. and i am sorry. please excuse me.
let me try this again
A $1000 1911 a RIA is not, but they can be as accurate and as reliabel as one. There are alot of things that you aren't getting with a RIA and the $400 price tag, but it has everything that you do need.

hopefully that sums it up a little better and i sure hope that i didn't lead anybody astray with my post.

XDKingslayer
September 9, 2008, 11:57 AM
It is not a $1000 1911 nor will it shoot like a $1000 1911 unless someone on here has the targets to prove me wrong.

I don't think this is bad for the very first 7 rounds out of the gun at 15 yards offhand.

http://www.kingslayer.net/images/ria1911.jpg

I wish I would have kept the target from this weekend with an 8 round group you could covered with a soda can.

I'm going to have to start keeping all my targets. It gets better each time I go as we get used to each other.

possum
September 9, 2008, 01:50 PM
XDkingslayer,

that is some good shooting, and it looks pleanty accurate for my needs! thanks for sharing, and i can't wait to see more groups.

Blofeld
September 9, 2008, 02:34 PM
I'm sold. I'm looking at this for EDC, and frankly a $1000 gun is more than I will carry, scuff up, and bang around. I want a reliable workhorse, and if the 1911 bug gets me, I'll upgrade from there.

Thanks for all the responses, I'm sold on the RIA.:cool:

possum
September 9, 2008, 03:01 PM
I'm sold. I'm looking at this for EDC, and frankly a $1000 gun is more than I will carry, scuff up, and bang around. I want a reliable workhorse, and if the 1911 bug gets me, I'll upgrade from there.

sounds like a plan to me, and i can gurantee that you are gonna be hooked, and you will i am sure buy at least 1,2 or 10 more 1911's in the future!:)

scuff up
you should see mine, those one handed reloads, and malfunction clearances on, wooden post, your hoslter, a barrel, a table, a car door etc will do that though! i love it! and i wouldn't have it any other way!

rswartsell
September 9, 2008, 03:19 PM
IMHO you should also investigate the STI Spartan. It's a little above your stated price range (about $150 above, the MSRP of 660.00 can be easily beat).

This is a beginner gun that will also perform like a custom (or so the writers are saying). Maybe it would be worth a couple of more months saving up.

XDKingslayer
September 9, 2008, 03:35 PM
that is some good shooting, and it looks pleanty accurate for my needs! thanks for sharing, and i can't wait to see more groups.

And like I said, this thing is starting to group tighter each time it goes out. This past range session the only targets I kept were my wife's targets because she was so proud of them and I was so proud of her. The round count is up to 300 (not counting the 20 JHPs I ran through it) so I think it's peaked on accuracy. From what I've heard from the RIA forums is that it takes about 250 rounds for it to settle in and break in.

Thanks for all the responses, I'm sold on the RIA.

You won't be disappointed. Some people knock the fit and finish of the RIA but mine is tight and the action is very smooth. The parkerized finish was exceptional and I couldn't find a single flaw in it. I can tell you that the fit and finish is light years beyond that of my fathers Taurus PT-1911.

Sure you can see some machine marks inside it but they don't seem to be anywhere that would impede performance. And I sure as heck don't see the need in spending twice the amount to not have those machine marks.

Most of the people that knock it have never touched one. Every single 1911 fan I've handed my RIA to have all said the same thing.

"Wow."

possum
September 9, 2008, 03:36 PM
and guess who does work for the STI Spartan line... you got it, RIA does.

rocinante
September 11, 2008, 02:07 PM
I got an Auto Ordinance for 400. IMHO it is a nice and well made 1911. American made too.

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