Need some advice on different .45's


PDA






Carter
October 25, 2010, 07:39 PM
So I'm getting in to reloading and am now able to afford to shoot a .45acp (darn ammo costs). Until now I had limited myself to a 9mm.

After much consideration I've narrowed down my list to 5 choices.

1. Springfield SS mil-spec 1911 $630ish
2. Cougar 8045 Not really sure on the price
3. FNP 45 $600ish
4. German Sig p220 from the 90's $595
5. glock 21 with night sights $588

I want a good/great trigger (probably asking too much), accuracy, and reliability. This would mainly be for a range gun, but occasional cold weather carry (don't have a problem concealing fullsize auto's).

I don't really have any experience with police trade in's or imported handguns like the Sig (http://www.summitgunbroker.com/220_Nickle.html), so any advice would be appreciated.
The Springfield I've seen reviews of it firing properly after taking a swamp bath.
The FNP 45 and Cougar have always appealed to me but I don't know about their trigger.
The glock 21 is the more practical choice, but I hate glock triggers, and am unsure about their .45 models.


Which one would you pick, or more helpful, stay away from?
Thanks for your comments and help.

If you enjoyed reading about "Need some advice on different .45's" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
PO2Hammer
October 25, 2010, 08:09 PM
No experience with the Cougar or FNP.
1911's will more often than not have a 'break in period' where reliability is iffy. Some will remain iffy and require a good gunsmith's attention.
The Glock 21 will be reliable, but the Glock trigger is one of the most difficult to master for target work. Mine was a bit finiky when it came to finding accurate ammo.
I voted for the Sig because I think it will have the best chance of being 100% reliable, mechanically accurate, and they have great triggers. Very easy to shoot well with a Sig. My new-to-me P220 SSS (stainless frame and slide) is a very easy to shoot well, and it loves my standard handload (200 grain plated SWC). My Glock 21would not shoot that load well.
Another winner that can be found used for under $600 is the HK USP .45.

9mmepiphany
October 25, 2010, 09:47 PM
Your requirements are very reasonable. I think they fit the Sig 220 perfectly. Mine has an excellent trigger and is very accurate...I carried it as a duty weapon for many years

I will often recommend the Mil-Spec as a beginner 1911, but I seldom recommend a 1911 as a first .45, because they do require a bit of understanding to keep running.

the 220s in the picture are definitely the older model with the "sharp" hammers and I would expect them to be finished in electroless nickle. I've had good luck with LE trade-in Sigs in the pass and consider them a good value

Carter
October 25, 2010, 10:15 PM
Your requirements are very reasonable. I think they fit the Sig 220 perfectly. Mine has an excellent trigger and is very accurate...I carried it as a duty weapon for many years

I will often recommend the Mil-Spec as a beginner 1911, but I seldom recommend a 1911 as a first .45, because they do require a bit of understanding to keep running.

the 220s in the picture are definitely the older model with the "sharp" hammers and I would expect them to be finished in electroless nickle. I've had good luck with LE trade-in Sigs in the pass and consider them a good value

Thanks for the info. I'm generally vary wary of used guns. Scared to get a lemon, but I really like what a sig offers, just don't have the funds for a brand new one.

I've had a little experience with a RIA 1911, cleaned it once or twice, but nothing detailed like disassembling the frame. Its something that I wouldn't have too much of a problem with, but it is an added complication.


I also wondered if lessening the trigger pull on the glock would help with its long take up (I've practiced the trigger reset for it, but whenever I'm doing fast shooting I always forget about it) affecting accuracy.

MTMilitiaman
October 25, 2010, 10:25 PM
I gotta say, your first .45 has got to be a 1911. Whether it is the MilSpec or something else.

I've shot my HK USP Tac 45 and my SIG P220SAO, my dad's Ruger P90 .45, and I own a Glock 20, which is the same frame as the G21 just chambered in 10mm Auto instead of .45 ACP. My most pleasant experiences with the .45 have always been with the narrow assortment of 1911s I've shot. My brother has a MilSpec that he has customized a little and it is a sweet little shooter. And of course, history just oozes from a Remington Rand 1911 manufactured before my grandpa was born. I say get a 1911 for sure!

PO2Hammer
October 25, 2010, 10:31 PM
Thanks for the info. I'm generally vary wary of used guns. Scared to get a lemon, but I really like what a sig offers, just don't have the funds for a brand new one.

In my experience, Sigs and HKs are safe bets as used guns.

amprecon
October 25, 2010, 10:42 PM
Once you figure out the quirky trigger of the FNP-45 you will find that it is a very accurate pistol. It is one pistol that doesn't get the recognition I believe it deserves.
I wouldn't trade my Glock 21 for one though, when I pick it up it's like it infuses itself into my hand and is an extension of it. Perfection for me, accurate, reliable, tough as nails and won't corrode.

bds
October 25, 2010, 10:57 PM
Carter, with the price of reloading components falling, I am able to reload 50 rounds of 200 gr lead 45ACP for less than $6 now. I tell you, I am a happy camper shooting 45ACP back again.

As to your OP, have you considered CZ 97B? schmeky and Walkalong got me interested now. $632 at Bud's (http://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/31189)?

http://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/images/D11/31/31189.jpg

Carter
October 25, 2010, 11:01 PM
Carter, with the price of reloading components falling, I am able to reload 50 rounds of 200 gr lead 45ACP for less than $6 now. I tell you, I am a happy camper shooting 45ACP back again.

As to your OP, have you considered CZ 97B? schmeky and Walkalong got me interested now. $632 at Bud's?

I've glanced at them every now and then online. How's the trigger pull and reset on them?

bds
October 25, 2010, 11:05 PM
There's one in the sales counter at the range and I have been intentionallly avoiding handling one. :eek::D

Maybe schmeky or Walkalong will drop by and comment - I'll send them PMs.

Walkalong
October 25, 2010, 11:14 PM
Absolutely love my new to me CZ97B (http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=128495&d=1286119941).

It shoots like a dream. The competition hammer is a big upgrade IMHO. Recoil seems a bit less than the same weight 1911. It is seriously accurate. An instant "favorite" with me. It is simply awesome.

bds. If you don't want to buy it, don't shoot one, you'll be hooked. ;)

As to the original options, I am a big 1911 fan, don't care for Glocks or Sigs, and have no experience with the others.

TomADC
October 25, 2010, 11:40 PM
Does it have to have night sights?

http://pic20.picturetrail.com/VOL174/1021972/18168454/392828018.jpg

SuperNaut
October 25, 2010, 11:46 PM
Honestly all the choices you have are good ones, including Walkalong's C97B addition. The thing that sticks out to me is that two are poly-framed, and due to personal preferences I'd pull those from the list. That leaves four really great all-metal guns; two that I already own and love (Springer and Beretta) and two more that I will own someday (CZ and Sig). I'd break those down into trigger types:

1911 = SA
The Rest = DA/SA

The best potential trigger is always going to be SA. But of the three DA/SA's, the Beretta has the best stock trigger of the bunch - Hands down IMO.

So I'd break it down to a choice between the Springer and the Beretta, so now the question becomes do you want SA or DA/SA?

Marshall
October 26, 2010, 12:11 AM
If you want a 1911, the answer is simple.

If you want DA/SA, I personally, would go with the FNP in matte stainless, or the Cougar. The Cougar can be had for around $550.00, give or take. But it's all in personal preference. Touch them, feel them, etc. (I just like buying brand new guns, or if used, guns I can hand pick, touch, feel, inspect, etc.)

If you're looking for a striker fired gun, then go Glock. Or, Springfield.

9mmepiphany
October 26, 2010, 12:29 AM
There's no sense making this too easy. Here are my 2 CPO 220STs (stainless steel frames) that I got for $600/ea ...I think they are up to $650

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n79/9mmepiphany/fixed2.jpg

Here's one 220ST I added aluminum grips to, alongside my old duty 220 with rubber

http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n79/9mmepiphany/DSC_1267.jpg

schmeky
October 26, 2010, 12:31 AM
Luckily there are many choices. The CZ-97 is a good choice if your hand size is medium or larger. Another great choice in 45 is the Witness Standard 45 or Elite Match.

If you are recoil sensitive (I am) the all steel CZ is actually no heavier than a forged frame 1911, but the hand filling grip disperses and absorbs recoil very effectively. This is one of the reasons many shooters that try it like it. Plus it holds 10 rounds compared to 8 for the 1911 and 220.

Plus the 97's out of the box accuracy beats the Sig 220 (I've had 2 Sig 220's) based on my experience. If you like uniqueness, the 97 is pretty cool and quite handsome to boot.
http://img510.imageshack.us/img510/429/img0424.jpg

HisSoldier
October 26, 2010, 12:32 AM
My first firearm was a Colt all steel Commander, in 1972. A fine first gun, except it makes all other guns look bad.
I now have 6 1911's and 40-50 other steel autos of all kinds. My favorites are still 1911's.

wvshooter
October 26, 2010, 02:22 AM
For a range gun Ruger's P90 would rank high IMO. Very reliable, accurate and the price is right.

I just started reloading 45 and will be buying my first 45 in the next few months. Carry is important to me so I'm thinking maybe Ruger's P345.

wojownik
October 26, 2010, 02:30 AM
I voted for the Sig p220. It'll likely give you the trigger you want, great accuracy, and reliability. It would be my choice of those listed for both range and carry.

Runner up would be the Springfield 1911 mil spec.

labhound
October 26, 2010, 03:43 AM
I have the Stoeger Cougar 8045. Excellent quality pistol, accurate and soft shooting, all for around $450!

Jed Carter
October 26, 2010, 06:02 AM
I would get a 1911, not the one you listed, just do not like the sights. STI Spartan great entry level 1911, much better sights, STIs work right from the start. I would get a 1911 first then the G21 for your carry pistol.

DasFriek
October 26, 2010, 11:22 AM
Get the 1911, Its like a AR platform where it can be a mans Barbie doll and you can dress it any way you want.
It will also teach you on how to adjust and work on guns and learn just how most guns work.
Or you can leave it alone and shoot the crap out of it.
To me a 1911 isn't only a gun its an adventure.
Nothing ive ever shot comes close to a finely tuned 1911 trigger wise, Nor with getting back on target.
Its also easily the best full sized ccw you can carry for easy concealment.

Have an issue with a gun? Send it back to the manufacturer, With a 1911 you come here and get advice in the gunsmith section or here and fix it yourself that day or 2-3 days when the new part comes in from Brownells.

Yeh, Id take the 1911.

ForumSurfer
October 26, 2010, 11:29 AM
The glock 21 is the more practical choice, but I hate glock triggers, and am unsure about their .45 models.

I thought the same thing. I figured I'd get one and get used to it. Then I figured a 3 1/2 pound trigger and transfer bar would make it better. I still hate the trigger. It just is what it is.

For the range I'd stick with a 1911 and a bunch of wilson combat mags. But that's me. I love shooting a 1911 and it points naturally, feels better and is just more of a joy for me to shoot. But that's just my preference, not fact.

I'm one of the few fans of the fn, also. I actually like the trigger and the way it feels in hand.

For range use, stick to plain black sights. They just work better. Avoid night sights unless it's a carry gun and you'll be more pleased with your plinking.

bartman06
October 26, 2010, 01:03 PM
I voted for the Glock 21. Ive owned one and miss it but i love my M&P 45 now.
Just remember that in the end this is your gun.
Good luck.

Carter
October 26, 2010, 01:09 PM
One thing I liked about the glock is I can make it in to an awesome range toy. 30 round Kriss mags, 3.5 trigger pull, any number of barrels, SS slide (if I so choose), flash hider, the list is almost endless. I don't really see any of that stuff as practical application, but its something fun to play with if funds permit.
I was hesistant to add the glock, now I feel like I'm talking myself in to it...geez.

I really want night sights. Since I would be using it as a cold weather carry gun the chance of needing them goes up. Qualifying with standard sights at night sucks, especially at 25 yards on a combat course and the only light I had was a flash light.


Here's an idea. You guys send me money to buy them all. That way I'll be able to make an accurate assessment. Sound good?

ForumSurfer
October 26, 2010, 02:30 PM
One thing I liked about the glock is I can make it in to an awesome range toy.

I wish I had kept my gen 4 17 so I could have done just that. I have to admit, it would be fun to try one with a scope mounted and an extended lonewolf barrel for reloads.

Carter
October 26, 2010, 09:57 PM
I wish I had kept my gen 4 17 so I could have done just that. I have to admit, it would be fun to try one with a scope mounted and an extended lonewolf barrel for reloads.

Why'd you sell it?

ForumSurfer
October 27, 2010, 09:20 AM
Why'd you sell it?

I thought I'd like a 19 better. After living with it, the difference is minimal. The gen4 17 got rid of that awkward hump on the back, the difference was minimal...but it was enough for me to buy one for the first time. I wish I would have at least waited for the gen4 19 before trading out.

JimB120
October 27, 2010, 01:32 PM
Sig 220 is hard to beat for accuracy, reliability and just pure toughness, even if it's in that sissy skin :D.

Just kidding that same gun is next on my wish list.

Once you get used to that DA/SA trigger and the manual of arms on the Sig, they are really excellent guns.

I've got a couple of 1911's, but the Sigs soared passed them once I started shooting them.

Good luck with your choice!

Nar
October 27, 2010, 01:50 PM
I can't speak for the P220, or the CZ you were looking at, but i have the 9mm counterparts to both, the CZ is a great gun that functions well, and i have a police trade in of a west german P226, between the two, I like my sig more, but the CZ is probibly the better gun, so i would vote for the CZ is it was there.

engineer88
October 27, 2010, 03:15 PM
I chose glock21 just because it will last forever and there are tons of trigger configs you can drop ij yourself and for about ten bucks. My second choice would definitely be the springfielf.

Carter
October 27, 2010, 06:10 PM
Seems to be that no matter what I choose I'll be happy.

Guess it'll come down to price and availability when I finish getting my funds for the purchase.

SwampWolf
October 29, 2010, 05:35 PM
Though I've never owned a CZ 97, much less ever shot one, I've heard many times that the 97 can be very temperamental feeding anything but hardball. To those who are acquainted with this pistol, I'm asking if there's any truth to these "rumors"? I like the feel and handling qualities of the 97 and would consider buying one but I have no use for a pistol that has a finicky appetite when it comes to digesting a diverse menu of ammunition.

okespe04
October 29, 2010, 05:50 PM
1911s feed semi wad cutters well which will make for really cheap plinker reloads.

Dulvarian
October 30, 2010, 12:08 AM
Warning, massive wall of text:
I have both a Cougar 8045 and a G21. I shoot both fine, and between the two, I have about 20,000 rounds through them. I have never had a ftf, fte, light strike, anything, on either one. I keep them in good condition though. They shoot everything I have put though them, and the accuracy is comparable. I shoot about the same size groups with each at the same distances with the same ammo.

The Cougar has a little bit different feel to the recoil based on the rotating barrel. The recoil doesn't pull as high, but you can feel the rotational force on it, especially shooting +p rounds in it. If the hammer is down, it is a long trigger pull on the first round, after that, it is much crisper and shorter. Biggest downside is the frame width if you get ambi safeties on it (1/4 wider than the Glock). I also had a hard time finding a concealed holster that fit me and the gun. Mine doesn't have a round indicator for the chamber, but you can actually see a tiny bit of daylight through the barrel to the left side of the hammer if there isn't a round chambered. Very noticeable in daylight when you come up to target. Hammer also has a halfcock safety, and decocks.

The Glock is narrower at 1&1/8" but is 1/2" longer. Weight wise, fully loaded, it weighs about the same as the Cougar but is 13 rounds vs. 8. That is picking up both guns and feeling for a difference, I didn't put them on a scale or anything. That is also with the light on the Glock. I did get a ruler out and measured the slide widths just now :)

Both have nice sized grips if you have average sized hands. I hold in something that I can only describe as a Weaver or Modified Weaver grip and I get good engagement of both hands. My wife thinks they are both a bit large, but she has no problems shooting either. She prefers the Beretta, and even though she doesn't shoot as often as she should, she shoots about a 4-5" group at 7 yards with both. Before surgery, I was shooting about 2" groups at 7 yards. Some better, some worse. Even after several hundred rounds, I have never noticed a significant change in point of impact with either gun out to 25 yards. (That's the farthest I normally practice with handguns at. I have made 100 yard shots with the Glock for giggles. Best shot was 1" off bullseye on a full sized silhouette. Lol, and yes, I had a witness. He was using a spotting scope for me.) Most of my friends that have shot them found them easy to shoot and put pretty good groups down. Except the guy that was spotting for me above... he can't shoot handguns worth a darn, he pulls something terrible, and I never could break him of it.

I like the fact that the G21sf has the lower rail mount. I keep a 300 lumen switch activated light on it, and that's the one that sleeps by the bed. I did not like the difficulty of trying to swap out the rear sights on the Beretta. Without a press, I don't think you can do it. I bent two brass rods trying to get mine out to put a Burris Fastfire on it. I gave up. (If you check the advertisement pictures for the Fastfire II, it shows a Cougar 8045 (you can even read the model number on the slide in the picture)). Both will fire without a magazine. Both are easy to field strip and clean. However, the rotational action on the Beretta has more wear points and I think in the long run, that will limit the life of the gun before I have to start looking to replace parts, though I think I am good distance away from that. Oh, and the lower rear corners of the slide on the Beretta are VERY sharp points. I actually cut the web between my thumb and index finger once while pulling the slide back to field strip it. Even with about 4,000 ish more rounds through the Glock, there is less wear on the barrel.

I don't have experience with the other three, but I have a lot of experience with those two. Either one should do well if you chose to go with them. I have been quite pleased overall with both. I'm assuming that even if you are looking at a Stoeger Cougar, it should be made off the same molds as the Beretta, and I would assume (yeah, yeah, I know, you and me) that they perform similarly.

Hope that helps. And if not... NC isn't that far. Maybe we could meet up one day and you can try em both, though the odds of that are probably pretty low.

Carter
October 30, 2010, 12:39 AM
Thanks Dulvarian. I think I've pretty much decided on the glock 21sf. When it comes to form over function I'll take function every time. I read recently somebody saying Gaston Glock wasn't a gun guy, but an engineer yadda yadda. That may be true, but he invented one of the greatest handguns ever designed, and he did it cheap.

I really appreciate the offer to shoot your handguns, but as you said that is a low probability. Sadly, I can barely even make it out to the ranges around here any more.

Maybe someday soon there will be a lone wolf frame for the glock 21 that I can play with to customize the form part of the glock.

Dulvarian
October 30, 2010, 12:58 AM
It's only a low probability because I don't know where in NC you are. I'm in Charleston, SC.

I have in my custody a 1911 that was surrendered into my custody and I would like to return it to the kids father, who I think lives in NC. You can PM me contact info, and I might be able to work in a two-fer in the next few weeks.

And before anyone freaks out, I didn't seize the gun. I'm a military instructor, the kid said he was thinking about hurting himself and he turned the gun over to me. I told him to get in touch with me before he left so I could work out the details, but he failed to contact me. His contact info was on a yellow stickie of awesomeness until my wife ran my uniform through the wash with it in the pocket.

davidbee
October 31, 2010, 01:21 AM
I would say out of the choices you have Mil-Spec 1911.

Mr.Revolverguy
October 31, 2010, 08:12 AM
Walkalong and Schmecky has it right, they have discovered what I say is one of the best 45's on the market. Though I like and own Sig's I can't buy a Sig 220 knowing how well the CZ97 is built. For those asking, I have fed my CZ97 Lead and plated 200gr SWC's also without a hiccup.

Here is a review I wrote of mine I really love it, as it is my favorite 45. Even though it is my favorite 45 I did not give it a perfect rating which was very hard. But I have to stay committed to the user and the reader in providing a non-biased report.

http://www.dayattherange.com/?p=323

Another review using the CZ97 to test accuracy of my reloads

http://www.dayattherange.com/?p=861

harmon rabb
October 31, 2010, 10:25 AM
I own a xd45 and a couple 1911's, but man, i really loved the p220 i fired.

bannockburn
October 31, 2010, 02:27 PM
Tough choice to be sure. For me, the Glock 21 just feels too bulky and awkward in my hand (I feel the same way about the XD as well). The SIG P220 is a great pistol, even though I'm not especially fond of the DA/SA mode of operation. The Beretta Cougar is another fine pistol, and the rotating barrel design is an interesting feature to have with it. The FNP would get my vote among the polymer framed guns; very ergonomic and feels good in my hand even with having 15 rounds in the mag. Since the S.A. M1911 is the only traditional single action .45 to pick from, I would go with that, though by way of personal preference, I probably would spend the extra money on a new Colt Series 70Government if available.

If you enjoyed reading about "Need some advice on different .45's" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!