Will polymer ever end up in mainstream 1911?


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KBintheSLC
August 24, 2010, 01:53 PM
It has taken the industry by storm... pistols, revolvers, rifle (parts), etc. Now that the 1911 is a century old, will polymer frames step in as the next phase of it's evolution?

Traditionalists... flame on.:D

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gofastman
August 24, 2010, 01:55 PM
one can only hope!

the XD is getting kind of close isnt it?

phoenix79
August 24, 2010, 01:57 PM
Already started

http://www.wilsoncombat.com/p_specops.htm

Jim Watson
August 24, 2010, 02:05 PM
They are out there, if your definition of "1911" is loose enough.
STI and Bul are the two that come to mind first.

The Lone Haranguer
August 24, 2010, 02:07 PM
A 1911-like pistol can - and has - certainly be produced in a polymer frame, but to duplicate the original design frame exactly in polymer is not feasible, IMO. The large cutout for the slide stop would make a poly too weak.

highorder
August 24, 2010, 02:10 PM
I had a chance to put 300 rounds through an old Kimber polymer 5" 1911. The grip texture was nice, the grip comfortable, and the weight manageable. Had it been cheaper, I would have bought it.

Demitrios
August 24, 2010, 02:14 PM
So Wilson is selling a poly framed 1911 for almost $2,000? I thought one of the ideas behind polymer handguns was to make them more affordable.

Zak Smith
August 24, 2010, 02:17 PM
SV/STI double-stack "2011" pistols dominate USPSA Limited and Open divisions.

HOOfan_1
August 24, 2010, 02:44 PM
I thought one of the ideas behind polymer handguns was to make them more affordable.

Taking a page out of Heckler and Koch's book. Where they price the similar polymer USP and P30 the same as the all metal P226

ForumSurfer
August 24, 2010, 03:04 PM
I have a friend who owns a Kimber that I shot several times. It's a double-stack, polymer 1911-ish-thing-a-ma-bobber. Shoots great. He's offered it to me at some decent prices, but I just don't care for it.

Not many people ever seem to show much interest in polymer 1911-ish designs.

I like the Kimber and the Wilson mentioned above, but for the money I'd rather have an alloy or steel bob-tailed commander for carry. Double stack polymer 1911's are too thick and heavy for me to carry. I tried. I'll stick with single stack alloy or my glock for carry.

Zak Smith
August 24, 2010, 05:54 PM
An STI grip is not really wider than a regular 1911 with standard grips at its widest point.

Jim Watson
August 24, 2010, 06:15 PM
Much blockier, though.
Sorry I don't have mine at hand to measure circumference.

NWCP
August 24, 2010, 08:29 PM
Taking a page out of Heckler and Koch's book. Where they price the similar polymer USP and P30 the same as the all metal P226

HK pistols are no more expensive than any other quality pistol on the market. In fact they are less expensive than quite a few out there. Polymer doesn't mean cheap. It does add up to a large savings in weight when carrying.

EddieNFL
August 24, 2010, 08:43 PM
It's a double-stack, polymer 1911-ish-thing-a-ma-bobber.

Good description.

jmorris
August 24, 2010, 09:19 PM
Much blockier, though.
Sorry I don't have mine at hand to measure circumference.

I do, a stock colt is 5.25" an STI 2011 is 5.625".

jmr40
August 25, 2010, 04:32 PM
Smith and Wesson offers the M&P 45 with a 1911 style safety lever. Not exactly a 1911, but pretty close in practice.

mister2
August 25, 2010, 04:56 PM
Now that the 1911 is a century old, will polymer frames step in as the next phase of it's evolution?


Been around quite a while. Check out BUL M5 (aka Government Model). Personally, I like it better than the wide-body SS Para and parked steel SA models. Parts are understandably non-standard with a ramped bull barrel. The ramped feature was necessary, the bull was not.

BTW, aside from BUL and Wilson, Kimber also brought out a poly frame "1911". Quotes for those who would otherwise protest the nomenclature. Don't bother.

MR2

MrOldLude
August 25, 2010, 06:38 PM
So Wilson is selling a poly framed 1911 for almost $2,000? I thought one of the ideas behind polymer handguns was to make them more affordable.

Someone has to cover the cost of the injection dies.

KBintheSLC
August 26, 2010, 12:19 AM
Been around quite a while.

That's not the issue though. There are some slim pickings out there. The question is will it ever take over as it did in other platforms? Maybe the fact that it has been around for a while, and still has not caught on answers that question.

jim243
August 26, 2010, 12:29 AM
Not quite plastic yet but close - Aluminum

http://www.kimberamerica.com/products/pistols/covert/custom_covert_II/

jmorris
August 26, 2010, 08:14 PM
The question is will it ever take over as it did in other platforms?

As noted above they have in competition shooting. The only reason SVI went away from “plastic” is they didn’t get the equipment when “the split” occurred.

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 12:50 AM
HK pistols are no more expensive than any other quality pistol on the market. In fact they are less expensive than quite a few out there. Polymer doesn't mean cheap. It does add up to a large savings in weight when carrying.

Polymer does mean cheap, just depends on whether or not the company decides to overcharge for it.

HOOfan_1
August 27, 2010, 01:25 AM
HK pistols are no more expensive than any other quality pistol on the market.

If we are talking polymer frame, a lot more expensive than the FNPs I have seen. A lot more expensive than the Glocks I have seen.

KodiakBeer
August 27, 2010, 01:45 AM
Polymer does mean cheap, just depends on whether or not the company decides to overcharge for it.

No, it depends on whether consumers are willing to pay the same amount of money for a plastic pistol that they would for a milled steel pistol. So far, consumers have shown themselves perfectly willing to overpay for plastic guns held together with metal stampings.

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 02:06 AM
In a sense but the producer sets the price first and it was still high. Seems that the HK fans feel as though its better than all other guns for reasons that they can't fully describe. Only way I'll get a HK is a used for a good price or a new one when the company gets civie friendly and lowers their prices, or if they release semi auto versions of their military arms like they use to.

HisSoldier
August 27, 2010, 03:34 PM
Roll over JMB.

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 05:04 PM
Already did when the SpecOps 9 was made.

Strahley
August 27, 2010, 05:18 PM
I would love a "GI spec" style 1911 with a polymer frame for around $500

ForumSurfer
August 27, 2010, 05:32 PM
I would love a "GI spec" style 1911 with a polymer frame for around $500

Same here, single stack...available in 9mm, 40 or 45. No ambi stuff or add-ons other than good sights. Keep enough compatibility that we can add our own ambi-safeties, mag releases, triggers, hammers or whatever with off the shelf 1911 stuff. I don't even need an extra mag...heaven knows there are plenty of wilson combat mags floating around my gun bag as it is.

The STI's may be dominating in competition, but we enthusiasts aren't buying them in massive quantities. Make it simple and reliable, but coming in at the glock/xd price point.

Strahley
August 27, 2010, 05:57 PM
My thoughts exactly. They can make a polymer AR lower (I have one I'm building now actually) so why not a 1911 lower? Can't be THAT hard

unclenunzie
August 27, 2010, 06:20 PM
I'd guess tradition and a desire for a piece of history drives large numbers of buyers towards steel and wood. I am a total beginner in this area, and for me the 1911 platform defines steel and wood if you know what I mean. I do like my polymer/plastic guns, but the 1911 wouldn't be a 1911....

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 07:08 PM
seems like the 1911 has too many small parts that might not work in a polymer frame.

Zak Smith
August 27, 2010, 07:23 PM
The SV/STI 2011 series works great.

Roswell_Kid
August 27, 2010, 07:55 PM
A good polymer 1911...

:barf:

Not in my household. No way, no how, no discussion.

I guess that makes me a traditionalist, but so be it.

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 08:20 PM
Wait the 2011s are polymer?

Zak Smith
August 27, 2010, 09:19 PM
The grip is.

FIVETWOSEVEN
August 27, 2010, 11:05 PM
Oh, learn something new everyday.

Radagast
August 28, 2010, 12:45 AM
I've a Bul M5. It a great gun, reliable, accurate, with a more manageable grip than the Para or STI guns. It's my prefered option among the double stack 1911ish guns for gun games, although I will admit the STI 2011 has an edge in accuracy.
I'll probably sell it soon though, one day it will be replaced with an all steel gun. As it is basically a safe queen, I'll probably get a proper safe queen.

The original Kimber double stack polymer 1911 used a Bul frame. These had a different trigger guard to current production, so finding a holster can be an issue with the earlier guns, just something to keep in mind if looking at one. Most 1911 holsters are not set up to take a thick square trigger guard.

The reason why H&K are more expensive than Glocks is simple. They were originally cheaper than Glocks and didn't sell, Glock already had the market among police agencies and the Glock is easier to convert to from a revolver than the USP.
So H&K jacked up their prices, put out adverts appealing to snob value "Operators Operating on Operations with HKs" and watched the fan boi base boil over. Product placement in movies (Tomb Raider) also helped develop a perceived value. Basically the extra price pays for the marketing that creates the perceived value that justifies the higher price. It's circular logic, but it seems to work for them.
They haven't managed to get a major US military contract in 20 years of trying, and only a few police contracts (compared to Glock, S&W or even Sig) but they are still in business.

Ankeny
August 28, 2010, 01:19 AM
I'd guess tradition and a desire for a piece of history drives large numbers of buyers towards steel and wood. I think that is more of a fact than a guess. :)

millertyme
August 28, 2010, 04:28 PM
Kind of on a side note, I was looking around on the BUL site and it looks like they've rebranded a Tanfoglio as well. Not the M5, but the Cherokee.

David E
August 28, 2010, 05:11 PM
The only reason SVI went away from “plastic” is they didn’t get the equipment when “the split” occurred.

I don't think this is true.

My understanding is, since both Strayer and Tripp's names were on the patent, they BOTH got to keep making their frames.

I won an SVI polymer frame that was after the "split," so it seems to verify my info.

Only very recently, like within the past year or two, has SVI gone to an aluminum grip frame. Even on their website, they herald the "100% BILLET MACHINED MODULAR GRIP" as being "new!" And if you're patient enough to wait for their gallery photos to load, you'll see some have the poly frame.

Zak Smith
August 28, 2010, 08:13 PM
The only reason SVI went away from “plastic” is they didn’t get the equipment when “the split” occurred.
This has no relation to reality. SVI still sells poly-grip guns just like STI does.

jmorris
August 29, 2010, 12:25 PM
This has no relation to reality. SVI still sells poly-grip guns just like STI does.


Not so, you can even give Brandon a call if you don't believe me.

Go here to pick your grip. http://sviguns.com/1101.php?indx=10

You can chose from aluminum, steel or stainless steel. No plastic, SV ran out of what they had sometime last year. The only way you can get a plastic “SV” grip is from Brownells and they will run out too. The only “new” plastic grips are STI.

jmorris
August 29, 2010, 12:29 PM
Only very recently, like within the past year or two, has SVI gone to an aluminum grip frame.

That was when they hit the end of their stock pile of poly grips. Also so others don’t get confused neither STI or SVI ever made poly frames, just the grips.


This is the frame.
http://www.sviguns.com/cart_photos/57.jpg

This is the grip
http://spinstage.http.internapcdn.net/Spinstage/userdocs/products/p_791255004_1.jpg

akadave
August 29, 2010, 01:34 PM
...Well, Kimber was putting plastic main spring housings in their first productions guns...I got one. First thing I replaced with a steel one.

I would say that manufacturers are enjoying the popularity of plastics (polymers) in their guns. Its much cheaper than milling or forging. Its easy to re-tool for changes and its uber tacticool:p

I had a Kimber with a plastic lower. It was a hi-cap compact. The grip safety stung my hand and I got rid of it in short order. I do think you will eventually see a plastic framed 1911. Thats ok with my, my all steel 1911's will just go up in value.

Zak Smith
August 29, 2010, 07:28 PM
My bad - looks like you're right. SVI built me a poly-grip gun a few years ago.

Girodin
August 29, 2010, 07:59 PM
HK pistols are no more expensive than any other quality pistol on the market.

Save, Glocks, FNs, Steyrs, Kahrs, Smith and Wessons, etc.

jmorris
August 29, 2010, 09:57 PM
My bad - looks like you're right. SVI built me a poly-grip gun a few years ago.

A quick search and it looks like brownells no longer has them either.

The good news is that it doesn't take much work to turn an STI grip into a grip that is just like the SVI Scott grip (except it doesn't chip off) I have done quite a few for folks around here.

Casefull
August 29, 2010, 10:38 PM
I have lots of plastic pistols. They work fine and shoot quite well. In my opinion they are junk compared to a well made steel pistol. In 50 years they will not be safe for a full power load and the all steel guns will be carrying on. I am not saying I want to lug my steel 1911 on a backpacking trip but it is a lights out better machine for shooting accurately and quickly compared to the plastic guns.

jmorris
August 29, 2010, 11:09 PM
I have lots of plastic pistols. They work fine and shoot quite well. In my opinion they are junk compared to a well made steel pistol.

The “Plastic” pistols we are talking about like the Israeli BUL (remarked as Kimber in the bottom photo) and the 2011/Infinity pistols are not all plastic. You can see the steel at the top of the plastic in the BUL and the SV/ST’s are steel just above the grip. If had ever handled an SV, junk would not be a work that comes to mind.


Here is one of mine (chambered in both 9mm and 45) along with 50 yard test targets (yes, 50 yards).
http://i121.photobucket.com/albums/o213/jmorrismetal/SVI.jpg

http://i664.photobucket.com/albums/vv5/qvideo/gn/kimberpolymer.jpg

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