My very rich boss wants "the best" 1911


December 11, 2008, 12:31 PM
He had a Detonics 20 years ago and wants something similar... said the grip frame was too short for him on it though. He would possibly be carrying it but I doubt it actually.

I recommended the "officer's" size or maybe commander, pointed him to Wilson, Les Baer, and Nighthawk (I recommended the mid-size bob-tail nighthawk, about $2600)... any others I should recommend he look at? Money doesn't seem to be an object.

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December 11, 2008, 01:10 PM
Can he speak German (

December 11, 2008, 01:14 PM
Your boss better be real careful. I know a cardiologist that made the mistake of getting a Wilson Tactical Supergrade one fine day. He now owns around a dozen high end 1911s with no end in sight.

G. Freeman
December 11, 2008, 01:16 PM
I would add Ed Brown to your list, but it seems you have pretty much covered it.

December 11, 2008, 01:21 PM

December 11, 2008, 01:30 PM
He could always go custom like that wicked Rogers Precision 1911 I see floating around. The one that has reliefs cut out all over the frame and slide.

December 11, 2008, 01:40 PM
Ed Brown. Thanks. Forgot about him.

December 11, 2008, 01:42 PM

December 11, 2008, 01:43 PM
If I were advising him, I would try to get him to go to a range, shoot the Nighthawk, and some other semi-custom guns, an XD, an M&P, etc, and ask him why doesn't he get the semi-custom, and a couple of others in different sizes for the same or LESS than the Nighthawk? Or a semi-custom and a week at Thunder Ranch? It's his money, but I shot a Nighthawk at a rental range because I wanted to know what a $5 milkshake tastes like. FANTASTIC, but it ain't worth $5.

December 11, 2008, 01:46 PM
The best 1911 = STI Lawman

December 11, 2008, 02:16 PM
BTW he also wants a pump shotgun and an AR-type.

I said
1. LMT/SIG556/Wilson M4
2. Bushmaster/RRA/Stag
for the ARs

1. Mossy 590a1/Rem 870 Police
2. 590/870 standard

for the shotguns. Sound about right?

December 11, 2008, 02:25 PM
Have your boss look into a Ed Brown Kobra Carry. Unfortunately it really isn't able in most places to hold/shoot a high end 1911 until it is delivered.

BTW he also wants a pump shotgun and an AR-type.

1911, pump shotgun and AR? Sounds like your boss is reading gun/survival forums and wants to have evrything "covered". :evil:

December 11, 2008, 02:27 PM
Yeah, the Kobra Carry or the Executive Carry were my recommendations from Ed Brown.


December 11, 2008, 02:32 PM
This is what works for me.....


Boba Fett
December 11, 2008, 02:33 PM
+ 1 for RRA and SIG.

Has your boss considered building an AR rifle? I went for the RRA Entry Tactical myself, but I'm planning on building an AR once I scrape enough together...not rich like your boss ;) Or maybe I'll just go for the Sig :P

Und ich finde die Peters Stahl sehr interessant. Sehr nett. Ich muss haben!

December 11, 2008, 02:35 PM
This may be on his "low dollar" side....but it's purdy and is a shootin machine.

December 11, 2008, 02:46 PM
1911: Whatever he and one of the top tier custom smiths or shops decide on. The semi-customs are great, but if he's rich and wants the best, then point him toward it.

AR: Colt, Noveske, and LMT; configure as desired after understanding why and meeting his perceived need.

Pump shotgun: Whichever semi-custom Remington 870 configuration he decides on.

December 11, 2008, 02:54 PM
For a 1911-ish gun, I'd be looking at a Pardini GT45.

An AR-15? Fulton Armory, get it built to your specifications.

December 11, 2008, 02:58 PM
Have your boss call Claudio Salasa at Briley Mfg., or Paul Liebenberg at Pistol Dynamics. Either one can fix him up with what ever he thinks his pocket book can stand. These two guys put their talents together and came up with a pistol that puts the best of all worlds together in one package. Check out the Briley web site and see for yourself. There are other good smiths out there as well, who can put a pistol together for him that he will enjoy the rest of his life. Have him check out That should give him some good ideas.

December 11, 2008, 04:55 PM
Can't comment too much on the AR part, I have a S&W and I like it (not uber classy compared to some of the others out there). For the shotgun.... GET A BENELLI M3 Super90! Awesome gun, capable of pump and semi (and doesn't look like a toy, like the franchi does). Very high quality, very respected, very sexy....

December 11, 2008, 05:55 PM
I have access to an M3 and after shooting it, prefer my 590 actually. The recoil on the M3 is pretty intense.

I did mention it to him though. They are undeniably cool.

December 11, 2008, 07:06 PM
Nevermind the storebought guns above....steer him toward Washington state:

December 11, 2008, 07:32 PM
How about a lower end model to plink with(I've found the lower priced models are more reliable, feed better than the high end's) and a high end one to have fun with? $ is no problem. Perhaps a Colt and a Les Baer?

December 11, 2008, 07:57 PM
Right here:

December 11, 2008, 08:32 PM
I have owned high end customs, and standard production guns.

There is very little a $2500 Wilson can do that an $800 Colt can't do.

December 11, 2008, 08:42 PM
^^ That's EXACTLY what I thought when I shot that Nighthawk next to my Kimber. "What did they do with the other $2k?"

December 11, 2008, 08:58 PM
and there's one thing that a Colt can do that no custom a national icon.

December 11, 2008, 09:38 PM
Ed Brown Les Baer Wilson Nighthawk. All four make very good top end semi customs.

December 11, 2008, 09:42 PM
I dout colts come with tight lock-up or a good trigger out of the box. You need a good gunsmith to make a colt on the level of a nighthawk, Les Baer, Wilson, ect, ect.

December 11, 2008, 10:00 PM
That aluminum-framed Colt gunsite pistol is cool.

December 11, 2008, 10:15 PM
If I had lots of time and lots of dough, Rogers Precision ( would be on my list. Awesome stuff.

December 11, 2008, 11:25 PM
conan- No way. I did it. I held one in each hand, a Nighthawk and my Kimber, I switched them. The Alumagrips felt great, but they weren't worth $2k. If there was any difference in the trigger I couldn't tell. The Nighthawk guarantees 1" @ 25 yards, my Kimber will do 2, in unscientific conditions. Either of them would outshoot me. Good? Sure. Great? Ok. Worth three times as much as my Kimber? Absolutely no way.

December 11, 2008, 11:26 PM
Hell tell him to get a springer 1911 it will save him some money and hell like it

Prince Yamato
December 11, 2008, 11:35 PM
What about Barsto?

December 12, 2008, 09:27 AM
I am very happy with Ed Brown Exec. Target, and Les Baer PII with 1.5" guarantee. I would like the Executive Carry if I wanted to carry a Brown. Would probably lean towards a Dan Wesson CBOB just because It would be less $ at the cop shop if I had to use it. For carry I like the S&W1911PD Commander with CT Laser grips. I just saw where a guy did a DIY bobtail on one, an intriguing thought for the winter months.

If I needed to spend $3,000 plus I'd get the Brown Classic Custom.

Then I'd get the Wilson Super Grade to compare.

December 12, 2008, 12:03 PM
I dout colts come with tight lock-up or a good trigger out of the box. You need a good gunsmith to make a colt on the level of a nighthawk, Les Baer, Wilson, ect, ect.

The fit and finish of the custom would probably be better. The trigger might be better, but might not. From a practical shooting standpoint, there is not going to be a significant difference in performance for most people.

December 12, 2008, 02:20 PM
The factory customs are neat.... but if I was spending that kind of $$ I'd be wanting more a more personalized design, and some kind of exclusivity.

If he just wants a cool 1911, then show him lots of pictures and let him buy whatever looks pretty to him. He doesn't seem like a hardcore shooter (which isn't a knock, many/most aren't), so the actual performance gains these guns have likely will go unnoticed.

Much like buying exotic cars, really the performance potential is only there for bragging rights. Style, exclusivity, a "personal" feel both with the gun and the builder - these are the kinds of intangibles likely to matter more to a man buying a gun as functional artwork. There is certainly nothing wrong with that (I like pretty things myself at times), but I've known several people like your boss. Them buying guns is somewhat of a different prerogative than likely me or you.

I'd just slip him a Rogers Precision business card (or one from anyone else off LTW forums, I just personally like their work) and tell him to give them a call.

December 12, 2008, 05:45 PM
Dan Wesson Valor

December 12, 2008, 08:00 PM
Tell him about the German made Korth.

Brian Williams
December 12, 2008, 09:45 PM
How about an original US GI Colt or even a Singer....

December 12, 2008, 10:00 PM
How about an original US GI Colt or even a Singer....

Yea, I agree... I would rather spend a couple thousand on a US GI Colt than on a Les Wilsonhawk any day!

December 12, 2008, 10:23 PM
If money's no object, I'd +1 the suggestions already out there about having him give a big name custom 'smith a call.

Will the finished product at all justify the price for whatever he expects the pistol to do? Good question, but I wouldn't stop someone spending their own money however they want.

December 13, 2008, 09:54 AM
How does that saying go ...

"You show your expensive custom 1911's to your friends ... your enemies get to see your Glocks." :evil:

Taurus 617 CCW
December 13, 2008, 10:04 AM
I work with a master pistolsmith that builds custom 1911's. He uses STI frames and Infinity slides exclusively. One of his ISPC guns holds 19 rounds of .45 ACP! Pretty sweet gun.

December 14, 2008, 10:00 AM
A minty pre-war Colt National Match for show, and something like this to shoot:

Nothing says quality 1911 like a vintage Colt.


December 14, 2008, 10:09 AM
After owning and selling/trading a slew of these things, I'm back down to none.

My next and hopefully final 1911 will be the Colt Gunsite. To me, it's 1911 nirvana. It has everything you need, and nothing you don't. Not cheap, but not ridiculous like some of them.

Browns Fan
December 14, 2008, 09:53 PM
Since he is already partial to Detonics, only a full sized one, I'd recommend a 9-11-01. I have one, and love it.

Detonics is supposed to have moved to southern Ill somewhere, not sure if they are fully operational yet.

December 14, 2008, 11:02 PM
I have owned high end customs, and standard production guns.

There is very little a $2500 Wilson can do that an $800 Colt can't do.

I'm a "rich boss" myself (not bragging, just stating for relevance to the OP topic), but I started with a Colt Lightweight XSE Commander, then added a Colt Stainless Government, then finally a Colt Stainless Commander.
I'm extremely fond of all three, and while I could buy into one of the "ultra custom" 1911's, I see no reason to.

My Colts always work with just normal cleaning and care, they're durable as hell, and as I look through all the cute custom things that can be done to a 1911, not one of those things would improve my chances in a real gunfight (my Colts are carry pistols).

So for the price of one $2500 Wilson (or whatever), I have three fine examples of 1911 pistols made by Colt.

December 15, 2008, 09:40 AM
A Ted Yost or CT Brian built gun would be super high end! Or Don Williams or Chuck Rogers or Alan Tanaka. Lots of others I am leaving out because my brain is full of other stuff right now.
For the Semi factory guns, I think Brown and STI are better than Wilson and Baer. Just my opinion.
Infinity makes AWESOME guns but I don't if they make any officer's sized guns.

Marcus L.
December 15, 2008, 09:55 AM
Springfield Professional. These pistols are essentially hand fitted and custom rigged for maximized reliability and performance. It is pricey, ranging from 2k-3k, but you get what you pay for.

Members of the Firearms Institute worked with the DOD during the pistols trials of 2005 to test 9mm, .40S&W, and .45acp pistols. Although 1911s were not part of the trials, several makes were purchased by the DOD and tested in addition to the others. I know that Wilson Combat, Springfield, Kimber, Colt, and Les Baer were tested along with several others. Some pistols faired better than others, but the Springfield Professional was consistantly more reliable with different types of ammo and with adverse conditions such as the sand test which emphasizes reliability and accuracy consistancy with sand around the locking lugs..

I don't shoot 1911s anymore, but if I had the money and inclination that would be my top choice.

December 15, 2008, 11:53 AM
Good input, all. I'll forward it to him. Thanks!

December 15, 2008, 12:58 PM
if he is going to spend that kind of money, he could go ahead and get a very unsusual 1911. take a look at NCG fixed barell gas operated 1911's. 1" @ 50yds is pretty cool.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
December 15, 2008, 06:31 PM
John Jardine? But I think you'd have to buy used....

December 15, 2008, 06:39 PM
Dan Wesson Valor

I cannot believe it took 37 additional posts to get this recommendation.

December 15, 2008, 09:19 PM
My first handgun was a Nighthawk. Got me absolutely hooked. Many later, the first is still the best. Your list sounds good to me!

Browns Fan
December 17, 2008, 07:58 AM
To supplement my previous post, I googled "Detonics 9-11-01". There are places out there that have them in stock for a better price than what I paid for. Most will ship to your local FFL.

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