Springfield Mil Spec GI vs Glock 36


May 26, 2010, 02:42 AM
Hello everyone. I was just looking for opinions on the subject of which CCW I should get next. I REALLY like the looks of 1911 style pistols, especially the 3" barrel models. I've heard some not so great things about their reliability though. So my question is which would be a better CCW gun?

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May 26, 2010, 10:51 AM
For a CCW, I would never choose a pistol based upon "looks".

I can't say from personal experience, but I have read that the shorter barrel 1911 style pistols can be finicky about ammo.
I don't know if that's true.
Maybe someone with firsthand knowledge can give us the real scoop.

I do know, from firsthand experience, that Glocks are very reliable.
And there is a ton of aftermarket accessories available too.

Good luck,

May 26, 2010, 10:53 AM
If you are questioning reliability of a CCW, I think there is only one true answer here.....and you answered yourself in your post

*Hint* And it's not a 1911

If you "REALLY like the looks of 1911 style pistols, especially the 3" barrel models", then buy one for the range where if it jams or screws up, your life isn't on the line. If I owned a CCW weapon, I would want to know 100% it was going to fire when I pulled the trigger. My .02

May 26, 2010, 10:55 AM
Can't speak to Glocks, but my officer-size Rock Island Compact has been perfect after an initial breakdown and scrub: zero failures of any kind. I would guess 1K through it, a mixture of commercial and factory LSWC, LRN, and FMJ bullets of varying OALs with no problems.

For $450, you get an affordable, accurate, and reliable officer 1911.

I don't carry it much in the summer, but in the winter it was my weekend and day-off carry gun.


May 26, 2010, 03:35 PM
I looked at the Kahr, but it just isn't a good looking gun to me. It looks awkward because of the short slide and long handle. I know that reliability is the most important thing to take into account when choosing a CCW, but I also want a good looking gun. The Glock isn't exactly good looking, but it does look menacing and purposeful which lends well to the aesthetics. The compact 1911s on the other hand are just gorgeous. I think I was just hoping everyone would say that compact 1911s were the most reliable gun they have ever had so I didn't have to choose the Glock. Oh well.

Mitch from LA
May 26, 2010, 03:52 PM
Most folks seem to think the commander length 1911 conceals quite well and that quality manufacturers produce very reliable ones. Not too sure about the 3" models though. In any case you may not want to let 4 or 5 smarmy internet replies influence your decision.

May 26, 2010, 05:00 PM
I don't really have a problem with concealing my full size Springfield TRP. The barrel length is waisted going down my leg, so shortening it doesn't make it that much more concealable. I absolutely love that gun, and it pains me that being a skinny guy I have a hard time concealing it in shorts and a t-shirt in the summer. I have to go with a snubby on my frame it seems.

May 26, 2010, 05:19 PM
I have an Officer's ACP. It has always been reliable (I do run a different from OEM recoil spring system in it) and I like it a lot. That said, I did want a lighter 45 for IWB carry. I looked hard at the G36 and the CW45. I went with the CW45. I had a few issues with it, but have those worked out now. I like it so much that I hardly carry the OACP anymore.
FWIW, the G36 I shot jammed on me several times. In it's defense: it was a range gun and, perhaps, I limp wristed it. The only two Glocks I've had issues with have been 45s (the G36 mentioned and a G30SF I owned for a short while - trigger bar issue).
I've banged away happily with a G19 and my G27 has been flawless through several thousand rounds of .40S&W.

Full Metal Jacket
May 26, 2010, 05:47 PM
kahrs have ammo specific reliability.

May 26, 2010, 06:20 PM
kahrs have ammo specific reliability.
Hmm, I haven't noticed that with my particular CW45.
I've shot a wide variety of factory ammo (to include aluminum and steel cased) in it without ammo induced failure. I did find that reloads do need to be run through a factory resize/crimp die.
Is there a particular brand/load that has given problems? I sure would like to know:uhoh:

May 26, 2010, 06:24 PM
"Tupperware is for leftovers, and guns are made of metal." Seriously I would carry an Ultra Carry over a Glock anyday but it all boils down to personal preference.

Full Metal Jacket
May 26, 2010, 06:32 PM
Is there a particular brand/load that has given problems? I sure would like to know

one example would be the fact that kahr 9mm's generally won't feed 124 grn gold dots properly.

May 26, 2010, 06:44 PM
one example would be the fact that kahr 9mm's generally won't feed 124 grn gold dots properly.
Thanks, I didn't know that. I don't have any hands on experience with their 9mm pistols.
I did head into a local shop the other day fully intending to buy aCW9, but ended up putting a Hi Power on layaway.

Full Metal Jacket
May 26, 2010, 06:48 PM
no prob, my friend :)

May 26, 2010, 07:12 PM
well made modern handguns are generally reliable. Try them both and see what you shoot better. I had a g30 that would choke and die on any LSWC I fed it at any OAL. All guns have quirks- pick what feels good to you, that you shoot well, and which one you'll actually carry.

The hammer on 1911s can dig a bit depending on your holster selection. Glocks, being striker fired, don't have this issue. I carry a LW commander regularly, and a glock 23. Both run well- however I shoot the commander a little better, so I carry it more often. Also don't overlook the g30. Aside from the LSWC profile, the one I had ran great and packed a lot of firepower into a fairly compact package. the 30 is a bit chunky, but 10+1 rounds of 45acp in a package that small is very much a show stopper!

May 26, 2010, 07:38 PM
I carry a Kimber Ultra Carry II or my Springfield full size 1911 and both conceal great with my cross bread holster. I was very surprised at how well the full size 1911 carries. I also have a Glock 17 but I love the 1911's and shoot the 1911's extremely well.

I second this I also have the Ultra Carry II and Springfield full size 1911 and both carry great. I am so pleased with the full size 1911 in my cross breed holster that I starting to question my Ultra Carry II purchase.

May 26, 2010, 08:15 PM
kahrs have ammo specific reliability.

Mine doesn't :rolleyes:

BTW: I'd would take a Springfield 1911 over a Glock any day of the week, no matter what it's use was going to be.

Full Metal Jacket
May 26, 2010, 08:19 PM
BTW: I'd would take a Springfield 1911 over a Glock any day of the week, no matter what it's use was going to be.

me too. :) my champion operator has been more reliable than my glock 19.

May 26, 2010, 08:32 PM
Yep, I think Doc Glock is a 1911 fan to. ;)

He did almost admit it, remember what he said in post #2
I like reliable pistols so my opinion may be biased!

My Springfeild Mil-Spec is the only semi-auto pistol I can ever remember owning that has never malfunctioned in ANY way, I did have a 4" Colt 1991 that I don't remember ever having a malfunction with, but I probably only shot 50-100 rounds through it before I sold it, and I owned it for 4 or 5 years.

To the OP there are several differences between a Springfield Mil-Spec and a Springfield Mil-Spec GI, If you want to know what they are let me know. The GI is a little cheaper but the "Mil-Spec" is a better deal, IMO.

May 26, 2010, 09:25 PM
3" 1911s can indeed be less than acceptably reliable as a rule. The platform was not designed to work with that short a slide and all the issues it can cause on the cycling of the gun. That is not to say they can not or will not work but they can indeed have issues.

4" and above in slide length is good to go in the 1911 platform, they are reliable as any handgun on the market as a rule.

100 years of production and use does not lie, the platform just flat works.

May 26, 2010, 11:14 PM
From what I've read, the majority of issues pertaining to reliability with the 3" 1911 pistols has to do with the magazine in use. It seems as though the most suggested brand of magazine is the Wilson Combat magazine. And DeepSouth, I messed up in the title and description of the Springfield due to not knowing the differences. I apologize. The pistol that I am actually talking about is the Springfield GI Micro. The price generally runs from $550-600. It has a parkerized finish and comes with the wooden grips that have U.S. on them. That is a very good looking pistol. The only thing I don't like about it is the lack of a traditional 1911 beavertail. I think the beavertail is a large part of what gives the 1911 style pistols such a good look. Does anyone know if it is possible to swap out the tail on the Springfield GI Micro for a larger one with an upward curve? Also what all would have to be changed out to accomplish this. Sorry if it seems like I don't have much knowledge on the subject. I'm just trying to learn. :) Also, if anyone has one, can you post a pic of it? Thanks.

May 26, 2010, 11:30 PM
I'm trying to figure out the 3" barrel, vs longer and reliability. I like others heard someone somewhere state that 3" 1911s are less reliable. Since talked to several others, and read here, that 3" is just as reliable as longer.

The length of the travel (should be) is exactly the same. So no change there. Shorter barrel.. in and of itself should not be an issue. Barrel action on the other hand.. A shorter barrel, relative to the barrel link length and drop a shorter barrel would be tilted a bit higher up at slide lock. That increase in angle should only match the bullet angle better. Or does it?

Any comments on this line of thought? (Thinking out loud here)

May 27, 2010, 12:17 AM
Less mass is offset by high spring rates. So the slide moves faster. This effects feeding from the magazine, rounds being guided under the extractor and rounds being bounced around on there way into the chamber.
I dislike the 3 inch 1911 platform in steel. To short a barrel and heavy butt/magazine never felt anchored in my holsters.

May 27, 2010, 01:41 AM
To the OP, I would go with the Glock. I've had 1 malfunction out of several thousand rounds through Glocks. I went shooting with a past girlfriend, and I couldn't keep either of her two officer's model Colts running. Had more malfunctions that day at the range than I have the rest of my life put together. The girlfriend kept the little Colts going, though.

May 27, 2010, 10:36 AM
Between the two for ccw, I would choose the Glock 36. It would be more comfortable to conceal all day than a govt size 1911. Now if you want a 1911 for ccw, you should look at a bobtail commander if you have the funds.

May 27, 2010, 01:43 PM
I have and often carry a Colt Defender, which has the 3'' bull barrel. I have had one malfunction in nearly 500 rounds, 100 of which were JHP carry ammo. Most of the reliability problems I have heard of in 3'' 1911s were from other manufacturers.

I recently bought a Kimber Super Carry Pro with a 4'' barrel, and once I get enough rounds through it, it will become my daily carry. It feels perfect in my hand.

The Kimber has a curved (bobbed) grip so the Defender loses a bit of its shorter grip advantage, and it will hold one more round than the Defender.

For me, the grip size is a bigger deal for CCW than a 3'' vs 4'' barrel (at least for 1911s).

May 27, 2010, 02:13 PM
I had a para p12. Worked great for me. The only issues I ever had were some overly hot hand loads, which is clearly an operator problem.

After that little mishap, I replaced the springs and the extractor. It continued to function fine. I honestly never had a single mishap with that gun other than those hand loads from a friend. Not sure of the round count, but it was well over 3,000. It was also used when I bought it, so the round count is much higher. It was also just as accurate (in my hands) as my full size Kimber, maybe even more so.

Perform the suggested maintenance on a milspec 1911 of any barrel length and it will treat you well and be just as reliable as any glock.


Now if you want a 1911 for ccw, you should look at a bobtail commander if you have the funds.


One day I'll have two of those in my collection. One in 45 and another in 9mm. Right now, my kids are at an expensive age so collection additions are fewer and farther between. :/

May 27, 2010, 03:01 PM
I like the 3" colt defender, night defender, or new agent as carry guns. They shoot well, feel good in the hand, and feel nice in a quality holster.

I put 100 rounds through my Colt New Agent this morning without so much as a hint of a problem. Half were ball ammo and half were golden sabers.

May 27, 2010, 09:04 PM
To the OP, Mortimormcsnerd. Back in December '09 I was on the hunt for a smallish auto pistol that fired .45 ACP, much like you apparently. :D

Just on looks, I really, really wanted a Colt New Agent which is a 3" barrel 1911 pistol. I did fire two Kimber Ultra Carry II pistols owned by friends of mine when I was on the .45 ACP hunt, those guns have 3" barrels too.

Even as much as I love the way 1911s fit my hand, the real hard truth for me was that I prefer my carry guns to have some semblance of double-action-only AND have no manual safety lever. I grew up with revolvers, and I like my concealed carry autos to be "point and shoot" guns.

That led me on the path of "other than 1911". After looking at many compact .45 ACP pistols, I did end up buying the Glock 36 in January this year. The length, height, and width is very similar to a 3" barreled 1911, but you actually get 3.78" of barrel in the G36. However, you are stuck with 6 + 1 ammo capacity with factory mags in the Glock where some of the small 1911s carry 7 + 1.

What I like about the Glock 36 is:

- I'm not worried about marring the finish

- It is priced around $500 new for us non-LEO people

- It shoots and ejects all that I have fed it. Where as the Kimber UCPIIs I've fired could be limp wristed (feed jammed) easier than the Glock in my hands on experience.

- It shoots to point of aim with 230 grain ammo.

- Even though it is lighter than the Kimber, the Glock has less felt recoil to me.

- For a Glock, it fits my hands rather well and points instinctively for me. Kinda like a 1911 will, but it does feel completely different.

I guess it really comes down to what type of pistol type do you feel comfortable with carrying. A single action pistol with manual safety, or a striker type double action with no manual safety?

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